"The range of the intensity levels on the album is pretty impressive and so are the melodies and riffs sown into the compositions. Everything feels very guitar-oriented and there's little room for the atmospheric massiveness, but the energy of the guitars easily compensates for that", more: labandzi.blogspot.com/2021/11/shy-low-snake-behind-sun-2021.htmlFavorite track: Helioentropy.
"Snake Behind the Sun", out now via Pelagic Records.
Shy, Low are true masters of the exquisite craft of stark contrasts and broad dynamics, from delicate crescendos to the grandiose power of the riff... a craft that lies at the heart of every outstanding instrumental rock record. The Richmond, Virginia based four-piece has made an absolutely incredible and epic album brimming with creativity, groove, heaviness and truly outstanding songwriting-- a record that is intricate and mature, yet gloriously anthemic at the same time.
The fantastic cinematic and (surprisingly, so) entirely self-produced first music video for the track „Helioentropy“, premiered at Roadburn Redux this year, was only a tastemaker for the 5th studio album and Pelagic debut, Snake Behind The Sun.
Recorded, mixed and produced at Vudu Studios in Long Island, NY by Mike Watts (The Dillinger Escape Plan, GlassJaw, Hopesfall, Tides of Man), the album pulls from elements from previous eras of the band, but also pushes into new territory. The result is a slicker, more modern, layered and 3-dimensional sound.
„The recipe for achieving that began with a lot of pre-production on our end“, comments guitarist Zak Bryant. „We demoed the entire record at home prior to entering the studio, re- working some songs several times before calling them done. From there, it was Mike (Watts). After hearing his work with bands like O’Brother, Lume, Glassjaw, and others, we grew very fond of the drum sounds he got, and his ear for overall mix balance and production.“
The other important ingredient was drummer Dylan Partridge, who at the time of recording was a commissioned drummer and is now a fix band member-- and the phenomenal drum room at Vudu Studios. These two elements were crucial in creating the overall vibe and atmosphere for the record. „Hunkering down in the studio for 3 weeks to track the record was extremely beneficial and something none of us had done in the past - it gave us the ability to really fine tune the songs alongside a producer, and the ability to experiment with various gear not normally at our disposal“, says Bryant.
The album title is a metaphor for the notion that darkness and negativity can remain hidden even among seemingly positive forces and positive beings in one’s life. As a matter of fact, the snake crawled out from behind the sun, while the band was in the studio recording the album: „By week 3, there were talks of NY state locking down due to the rapid rise in Covid cases; with one day left before the lock down was alleged to go into effect, it became a mad dash to finish tracking the record so we could book it home to Richmond, Virginia“, says bass player Drew Storcks.
Though entirely instrumental, reducing the band's contemporary sound to the term „post-rock“ wouldn't do this record justice: there is much more to it than lengthy dramatic build-ups and bittersweet melodies played by delay-drenched guitars. Snake Behind the Sun is an astounding and immensely diverse record that will appeal to fans sitting on all ends of the broad spectrum of modern heavy rock music.
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Sure being a fulltime artist is great and all, but I also work about 60 hrs/week and a lot of it is not fun. When it's the middle of the night, and I'm exhausted, and alone in my studio with a looming deadline and a painting that's already taken so much of my time that it feels like a bad marriage, I have two listening options: 1. The Rich Roll interview with David Goggins, or 2. This album. Pure motivation! Madeline v. F.