The German post-rock/post-metal scene is shaping up to be one of the most vibrant in Europe, what with bands like Tephra and now Colaris making the kind of music they’re making. And since yesterday I had such a pleasant reminder of why Bandcamp is one of the most generous sources of great music on the web nowadays, I thought I’d stay there and fawn over this remarkable EP.
I haven’t talked about an EP in quite a while, have I? I think this format is akin to the literary short story. It takes a lot of focus and a great measure of critical cruelty from a band to release a good EP, given that it allows for much less time to create just as great an impression as an LP would. There’s no room for fluff, for padding on an Extended Play, and by all means, neither should there be on a full-length record, but that’s another discussion altogether. In any case, Colaris have put forth a very dense, very hard musical gem here. Listening to this record I get the feeling I’m dealing with some sort of rare mineral, born under tremendous pressure and heat, forged to a jagged, translucent, violently colorful prism. Never have I heard post-rock, well, supposedly post-rock, of such fury. That’s why I’m rather tempted to say this garnet would fit better in the same display case with bands like Rosetta Stone, ISIS, Cult of Luna and such, even though it lacks the vocal element.
The Disclosure is a formidable display of proficiency, given that it’s the product of a “power trio”, from what I can discern. You see, most post-rock outfits are more on the large side, using a plethora of instruments to create the lush sonic environs they usually weave. Rare is the band operating within the confines of this genre which doesn’t resort to at least a keyboard, as a balanced mediator between the rhythmic section and the solo instruments. Not Colaris – guitar, drums and bass is all they need to formulate this flammable, enraged music. The sound is raw, jagged, positively towering, enjoying stupendous production value for a band taking its first steps and displaying an uncompromising, sharp perspective on the vector this genre should be treading.
There’s a lot to be said for the use of drones in predominantly instrumental music. After a while, my mind ends up treating every song in much the same way a spectrogram would – the different layers and nuances collapse into one, rolling, colorful plane, a visual representation of a vibe, a sort-of energy the music conveys. That’s the essence of tuning in to the mood a certain song might be fit for – above and beyond all the technical intricacies, there’s a unifying note, tying the whole thing together. Post-rock and post-metal have been facilitating this kind of thinking for me by the use of drones – staggering, unrelenting, tectonic vibrations the songs and even albums are built upon. Sometimes I feel like there’s really no need for anything more for a record to truly enthrall me. And here’s Colaris, elegantly dodging the same, rather rudimentary, technique and managing to create the same effect via synergy rather than industrial construction. The instruments communicate and complement each-other so well on this EP, I am left with a devouring hunger for more from this band, a swirling vortex of expectation. This is music one hears as much with the ears as with the very bones, its dark red glow permeating every cell, animating, infuriating, activating every mental and metabolic process. Make no mistake, The Disclosure EP is much larger on the inside than on the outside. The music is positively vast, infectious, apt not only to put you in a certain mood or other, but to influence, in my opinion, the very rhythm of your beating heart.
I realize I sound a bit ridiculous, but I’m really excited about this band. Not since I came across a single track from the Canadian band Atomis have I felt the gap left behind by ISIS and the rather long, at this point, absence of a Cult of Luna album has been filled so generously. Again, I have the chance to embed the entire EP in the post. For all you post-rock/metal enthusiasts out there, just listen to the tremendous buildup on Guiding Lights, revel in the robust, rippling guitar/bass synergy and the determined, guttural drums; this is something one doesn’t dig up every day. Enjoy, and I’ll see you soon!