|Label:||Art As Catharsis Records|
You are alone, on a raft, under the full moon. Adrift, as it were. Gradually, the sea beneath you begins to bubble and, as your flimsy raft wobbles precariously, you realise that you’re afloat on a vast ocean of churning, acrid bongwater. A gargantuan black mass emerges from the greenblack sea. It’s Cthulu on a bad trip, pissed-off and screaming a cacophony that sounds like he’s had his voicebox replaced with the world’s largest, loudest Big Muff. Consumed with fear, you grasp the radical finitude of time, the abyss of meaninglessness that lies behind all existence and the realisation that you probably shouldn’t have pulled that thirteenth cone after all.
This is something like what listening to Adrift For Day’s sprawling drone opus, Come Midnight, is like. While keeping one foot firmly mired the thick, fuzzy morass of stoner metal, the album ambitiously reaches towards progressive rock and post-metal to embellish its high-concept existentialist lyrics. If on paper this all sounds dangerously high-falutin’, be assured that the album doesn’t lack visceral gut-impact. The opening ‘i. A Premonition ii. Void iii. The Aftermath’ justifies it’s fifteen-minute length on the basis of some unexpectedly angular stoner riffery, bitchin’ lead guitar work and excellent pacing. Yet ‘Back of the Beyond’ is arguably where Adrift For Day’s droneprog alchemy serves its most potent brew. The song emerges out of some stark yet genuinely beautiful acoustic guitar meanderings into a slow-burning Sabbath-like blues that carries an excellent performance from vocalist Mick Kaslik, perfectly encapsulating the album’s sense of lonesome yet defiant melancholy. And the crawling, seething, mass of fuzz that blankets the album’s paranoiac closer ‘Eyes Look Down From Above’ is world’s best practice for the audio-equivalent of a severe green out.
Despite coming from some dudes that must’ve smoked a metric fuckton of reefer in their time, the album is polished and assured. The spacious, natural production gives depth to the album’s dynamic shifts and weight to the obligatory slabs of epic guitar fuzz. The twists and turns of each lengthy drone suite are navigated with both precision and passion. Although not all of the tracks hit the heights of the album’s best moments, Adrift For Days deserve props for refusing to lean to rely too readily upon the predictable stoner-rock moves. This is an album that demands attention and devotees of the genre who like their smoked-out doom with a bit of spice will inhale deeply and gladly.
Posted: Wed 18 July 2012