Kayo Dot - Blue Lambency Downward
How to pin down Kayo Dot...how to do the impossible. From the ashes of the progressive metal outfit maudlin of the Well they rose all of 5 years ago, and in that short span they've both confused and awed those who have continued to listen. Main-man Toby Driver is something of a legend in his own time in the realms of avant-garde and progressive music, having influenced an untold number of younger and older acts with his knack for songcraft and classical-minded approach to rock and metal. On Blue Lambency Downward, they manage to perfect their own formula for post-rock laid out previously.
For the uninitiated, a Kayo Dot album can be hard to digest, demanding close attention to detail but in a manner that never becomes drawn-out, dull or dumbed-down. The musicianship of the entire group of performers on this record is absolute top-notch. And the songs themselves are brilliantly written, grand and epic sweeping movements. They lend much to the early-mid era King Crimson releases, while also retaining an almost pop-like attention to alarming melodies and hooks that aren't quickly forgotten. The title track starts things off, and throughout it's 9 minutes it shifts around more than some bands do on an entire album. The real kicker here is that they never lose a core Kayo Dot sound, due to both the skills of the musicians and of the knob-twisters; the production is worth noting as beautiful, lending each melody and harmony, each instrumental passage and each verse wide-open space to shine.
Throughout the remainder of Blue Lambency Downward, treasures abound on each and every track. The slinking, murky and out-right startling buzz of "Clelia Walking", which sounds like Swans backed by a horror movie soundtrack; the jazz-band-jam-session feel of "Right Hand Is The One I Want"; it takes more than one listen to get it all down, but once you've spent enough time with it, Blue Lambency Downward is incapable of not leaving an impression. Suffice to say, Hydra Head Records are rubbing their hands together gleefully now that Kayo Dot are onboard. Money in the bank.
User Reviews and CommentsLog In or Register to Rate Albums
Tell us why this album is great or sucks ass, or correct the reviewer. If you write enough quality reviews you may find yourself on the editorial staff.
Reviews have to be over 100 words, shorter ones are classed as comments.
on 2008-05-20 SolitaryMan Said:
You know what I do when that happens? I know you might not always have the time for it, but I like to go and read other people's reviews of an album like that. And then I listen to it twice in a row. I thought I'd have the same problem with this one, but it never quite turned out that way. Had to listen more than three times, sure, but with each subsequent listen I'll find something new to love.
on 2008-05-20 dscanland Said:
Good work Kev, I couldn't review this album. It really wasn't happening. It was interesting but not triggering the words.