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Cloudkicker - Unending CD (album) cover

UNENDING

Cloudkicker

 

Experimental/Post Metal

4.05 | 2 ratings

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TCat
4 stars Cloudkicker is the project name for Ben Sharp's solo music. Cloudkicker comes under the genre of experimental / post metal music and Ben started releasing albums under this name since 2008. He currently has 5 full length studio albums, one live album and several EPs under his belt, including his EP "Undending", released in August of 2019. Ben plays all of the instruments on this EP which is made up of 7 tracks with a total run time of just over 28 minutes.

Starting off with the short track "Night" (2:18), we begin with atmospheric layers of echoing guitars. The music comes more to the fore with a mid-Eastern vibe in the melody, rumbling synths, percussion and electronic hand claps and tick ticks which lead into "Xaoc" (7:20), which is immediately heavier and heftier, almost following the same melody but with a more western variation in the sound. Loud guitars are layered over backing guitars, heavy drums and bass, and a more complicated sound in the melody. Things quite down just before 2 minutes and the music sort of floats along for a minute before everything tightens up again, this time with more keys added in to the heavy guitars, which become more churning and heavy as it all continues and layers of sound build in intensity to where it all comes to an end in pulsating feedback.

"Blackwing" (5:39) builds off of that feedback and continues with a heavy sound, this time with a more moderately slow tempo. A repeating pattern gets established with a thumping heavy bass as the guitars bring out the post metal style, but still allowing to keep a melodic aspect that doesn't waver in its beat. After 2 minutes, everything stops except for a soft electric guitar pattern overlayed by repeated chords. The drums eventually come back with a rolling pattern and then drone-like layers come back in as the track rebuilds. Layers continue to thicken building in a crescendo until the end.

"AR-Lp 36" (2:26) starts with quiet droning guitar chords that increase in volume. The heavy post metal/rock style continues to be evident with the dark and thick sound, but this track never really reaches full volume, but remains atmospheric and drone- like. "YHWH" (3:35) comes out of the fog with a distinct bass and drum pattern, thumping along at a moderately slow pace, that still has a driving aspect to it. Jangly guitars play in wide intervals and more melodic layers and effects join in. The sound is nice, not becoming overbearing, however, halfway through, it suddenly becomes very thick and heavy. The intensity suddenly drops of at minutes and lead into the short intermezzo "Wall" (0:42), which is fuzzy guitar noise with a industrial feel to it as it is looped and processed, finally bringing in the full volume of "Void" (6:06). The loop ends, but live heavy guitar continue the pattern of the loop and eventually develops into a complex melody and sound. Some cool texture changes soon change things up a bit as the music is disassembled and then put back together in a new, but still heavy sound, this time with a slightly cleaner feel, but time continues to build the sound as the track goes on.

This EP is a nice example of post metal/rock, sort of along the same lines as "Pelican" but less plodding and a bit more melodic. The music mostly follows the building patterns of the genre, but tending to stay on the heavy side and always building interesting, but sometimes overly repeating riffs. It's all pretty good, and probably just the right length as it is sometimes unrelenting, but lovers of the post metal genre should be happy with it. It may have become tiring if it was a full length album and more variety and experimental sections were not added, but as it is, it is just right. Loud enough to keep your interest and I do love the heaviness of it all, yet short enough so as not to wear you out with the sound. 3.5 stars rounded up to 4.

TCat | 4/5 |

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