Review of "Burial Songs" by Palehorse/Palerider

2017-03-30 05:12:02 UTC

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In order to excel in the independent music industry, an act has to define itself as especially unique with a sound quite unlike anything else in the community. This is a tall order, one that isn’t easily filled by acts entering variations of rock music due to the immense amount of bands flooding the scene right now. Palehorse/Palerider, a “doomgaze” trio from Denver, has released an EP entitled ‘Burial Songs’ that does a surprisingly superb job at separating itself from the pack. Let’s delve into it.

“Doomgaze” is a genre that very rarely gets floated across my desk, something that’s sometimes described as a mixture of shoegaze and doom metal. Palehorse/Palerider certainly have a unique sound, one that has some of the edge of ‘doom’ music, but it’s also doused in the meandering, atmospheric nature of shoegaze. ‘Sundowning,’ the first track on the new EP, is a terrific eleven minute expedition through the outfit’s spine-tingling sound. It’s an intensely bold statement right out of the gate.

‘Sundowning’ is more or less an instrumental jam, which works to its benefit. The vocals are so droned and reverberated they’re barely coherent, and thus, they serve the role of an instrument in their own way. This is how the vocals remain for much of the EP, and frankly, it’s brilliant. These three musicians have exceptional chemistry, and I love the ghostly nature of the haunting vocal croons. Even though the lyrics are pulled more to the forefront on ‘Tamám Shud,’ they’re still a backseat to the instrumentalism.

‘Tamám Shud’ is a beautiful affair, perhaps even eclipsing its enigmatic predecessor. It’s alternative shoegaze at its finest, laden with massive waves of synthesizers that sound like a modern Phil Spector ‘wall of sound.’ ‘Into the Abyss,’ the song that follows, seems to have a more melancholy nature to it. It’s the first track on the EP that begins to wear on the listener, however, because it’s too sonically similar to ‘Tamám Shud.’

The eerie ‘Nero,’ on the other hand, does strike a contrast between itself and the songs that came before it. It has a pressing, passionate nature, and it’s immensely refreshing after ‘Into the Abyss,’ the lull of the EP’s energy. ‘Nero’ has a sense of urgency to it, as if the wall of sound enveloping the listener is ready to explode in a cacophony of chaos at any moment. The final minute of the song is brilliant, too, especially in regard to the sharp

percussion performance.

‘Burial Songs’ is a fantastic EP. ‘Into the Abyss’ feels somewhat unnecessary, but it hardly detracts from a half hour of otherwise gripping music that the collection offers. Palehorse/Palerider have done a fine job of differentiating their sound from the rest of the music surrounding them in the indie scene right now.

Track List

  • Sundowning - 10:52 
  • Tamám Shud - 09:12 
  • Into the Abyss - 09:52 
  • Nero - 09:54


Genre : alternative, doom, doomgaze, psychedelic, shoegaze

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