“…without ever breaking into a race, the band are skilled at building tension and changing moods, bringing the music to emotional crescendos but also plumbing the quiet depths of abandonment and desolation.” — No Clean Singing
People Used To Live Here is the haunting new full-length from New Zealand-based atmospheric metal conjurers SPOOK THE HORSES. Ahead of its anticipated unveiling this Friday, No Clean Singing is currently streaming the record in full issuing, “The entire album flows almost like a single composition; some of the tracks move seamlessly from one to the next (it makes sense that the album is presented here in a single YouTube stream without artificial breaks). Yet without ever breaking into a race, the band are skilled at building tension and changing moods, bringing the music to emotional crescendos but also plumbing the quiet depths of abandonment and desolation.”
Hear People Used To Live Here at THIS LOCATION.
And if you missed it, view the pensive video for “Crude Shrines” still playing at Decibel Magazine RIGHT HERE.
People Used To Live Here will be released on CD, LP, and digital formats via Pelagic Records. Preorder options are available below.
Imagine if band members could rotate between instrument positions, because each musician had a proficient grasp on each instrument involved? It would supply a degree of freedom and mutual musical understanding, something that most bands could only dream of. SPOOK THE HORSES, from Wellington, New Zealand, are such a band.
Perhaps it’s this multi instrumentalism and virtuosity that explains the vast musical territory that is explored among the band’s three albums: while 2011’s debut album Brighter was defined by sweet post-rock crescendos, 2015’s Rainmaker was a much heavier affair that would appeal to fans of Cult Of Luna or Amenra. The band’s forthcoming People Used To Live Here, in quiet stark contrast to the aforementioned, sees the band turn the distortion knobs way down, to a mildly saturated crunch tone, at most.
The band’s most daring effort to date, People Used To Live Here explores the natural and immediate. Written and conceived in relative isolation over several grim Southern Hemisphere winters, SPOOK THE HORSES is defining their own sonic trademark with this album: an atmosphere of quiet desolation, raw and real, desperate and unsettling; the post-apocalyptic soundtrack to abandoned places, where people used to live, at one point in time, long ago.
“We deliberately isolated ourselves when writing this album to force us out of our comfort zones,” notes guitarist and vocalist Callum Gay. “Most of the songs began as completely improvised pieces that we slowly fleshed and developed over time. We wanted to make sure that immediacy was captured and conveyed in a way we’d never done before. There’s much less between us and the listener this time around.”
Fans of Bohren & Der Club Of Gore, Kilimanjaro Darkjazz Ensemble, Mogwai (Come On Die Young), and Amenra (acoustic), pay heed.
“The disparate feelings pull at the listener as the guitars lilt slowly through the songs main melody. An ever-present hesitation from the instruments helps build anticipation, setting an uneasiness to the music, and petering out in much the same way it came in.” — It Djents on “Lurch”