Listen to Indian
Note that I’ve nicked parts of this review from my own review of Primitive Man’s Scorn that I was not entirely happy with. I think they serve a better purpose here.
People sometimes misunderstand the word "melody" to mean upbeat or accessible, and "subtle" to always mean delicate or refined. Quite to the contrary, a melody is simply "a sequence of single notes that is musically satisfying." A melody can be happy, sad, or angry; intricate or simple. Likewise, subtle can also mean "a small detail that is usually important but not obvious," or even more fitting in relation to blackened sludge, "operating in a hidden, usually injurious way; insidious." If you pull out your dictionary right now, you might just find a picture of Indian right there in the entry.
While I am relatively new to the group, their last two albums gripped me instantly and resulted in marathon listens. There are layers to be peeled away. Anyone who thinks that tracks like "The Fate Before Fate," "Rhetoric Of No," or the last half of "Grace" have no melody need to get their ears checked or read up on music theory. Similarly, tracks like "Guiltless" and "Disambiguation" make subtle choices with drum patterns and guitar playing that separate the men from the boys. Add in some depraved Today is the Day-style shrieks and you have yourself a gateway straight to the id.
Truly, both From All Purity and Guiltless are monumental accomplishments in what it means to bring internal states to a listenable medium. The guitars are simply filthy. Riffs range from depressive doom metal marches to blasting spikes of rage. The drums provide a thick texture to it all while dragging even the most repulsed listeners through the duration. No matter the pace, Will and Dylan’s unearthly wretches are both tortured and hostile. It’s fight or flight, and Indian is a wounded animal.
There is only one thing that upsets me listening to these albums: I lived in Chicago while they were performing, and I never even heard of them until I had left. It’s a tragedy, because anything this vile is bound to be even better live. If you get a chance to see them, don’t hesitate. In the meantime, you can pick up their albums on bandcamp. Personally, I picked up a hard copy of the latest and bought Guiltless digital. Decisions, decisions.