I feel like Rolo Tomassi are a name that everyone in the rock world has heard of, but not enough people have heard. The incredibly highly-rated experimental metal band have created a sound unlike any other band I know. From the lighter, more uplifting sound found on Astraea to the darker, heavier Grievances, the band have captured the rock world with their sheer creativity and brilliance. This album promises a new chapter for the band, something as heavy and dark as it is beautiful and creative.
You wouldn’t guess the album was as dark as its predecessor based on the first track ‘Towards Dawn’, though, a beautiful ambient soundscape that slowly builds into the first conventional song on the album. It doesn’t exactly drop you in at the deep end there either, as ‘Aftermath’ sounds huge and anthemic, but not exactly as dark as the band have gone before. Don’t get me wrong though, this isn’t a problem- in fact the song is one of the band’s best ever- it just wasn’t what I was expecting.
As ‘Aftermath’ ends, ‘Rituals’ starts. Here is the dark, heavy stuff fans of the band will be craving. And the rest of the album kind of carries on in the same way. The ambient, uplifting sounds, buoyed by Eva Spence’s soaring vocals are contrasted perfectly by the screams and heavy guitars from the rest of the album. This contrast creates some beautiful moments, such as the slowly building piano interlude in ‘The Hollow Hour’, in which more sounds are slowly added to a simple piano tune, which then erupts into one of the heaviest breakdowns in the album. The opposite of this happens in ‘Contretemps’, in which the song slowly winds down to create an incredibly peaceful ending- a calm in the storm.
So I you haven’t checked Rolo Tomassi out yet, now is the ideal time. They have an incredible backlog, along with this, which could be one of their best ever albums. It is a true triumph of creativity in an increasingly dull music world, and proof that if you want to find something special, all you need to do is go and look for it.
Best songs: The Hollow Hour, Contretemps