Set Sail

July 10, 2015


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How about taking a journey today? Drive with the windows down on a desert highway. Set sail through an ocean storm. Climb to the peak of an icy mountain to witness the sunrise. Alaskan provides the soundtrack to all of these things. It's sludge for the meditative type.

But you can skip the yoga mat and herbal tea, because at the end of the day it's still some crushing metal. "Fiend" rumbles around just long enough to transcend, only to come crashing down in a pummeling avalanche of bass and snare. Truly these beats are supplied by someone with an ax to grind. You can hear the vengeful catharsis in every strike.

The bass guitar on tracks like "Inferno" grooves its way through each landscape, carving peaks and valleys into the very soil. Not to be outdone, the lead guitar crunches and clangs like thunder and lightning, occasionally reaching adrenaline-inducing crescendos as on "Submerge." Then there's the glacial-like build of "Guiltless" poised to raze everything in its wake. We ride a tornado, pausing briefly to the sound of glorious strings; but it's only the eye of the storm.

At the end of it all, you may feel inspired, small, or filled with rage. It all depends on your outlook. But when those despairing guitar chords and violins play out in a glorious blaze during the final moments, there is one guarantee: you will feel something. Both this album and the self titled are available on bandcamp. Just name your price. What's it worth to you?