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Knifeworld Buried Alone - Tales of Crushing Defeat album cover
3.79 | 33 ratings | 3 reviews | 15% 5 stars

Excellent addition to any
prog rock music collection

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Studio Album, released in 2009

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Singled Out for Battery (4:49)
2. The Wretched Fathoms (3:31)
3. Corpses Feuding Underground (2:52)
4. Severed of Horsehoof (6:20)
5. No More Dying (4:10)
6. An Arrival (3:30)
7. Unwreckaged (5:39)
8. Pissed Up on Brakefluid (4:30)
9. The Money Shot (3:37)
10. Torch (1:44)
11. Me to the Future of You (8:38)

Total Time 49:20

Line-up / Musicians

- Melanie Woods / vocals
- Kavus Torabi / guitars, bass, vocals, keyboards, recorder, melodica, harmonica, harmonium, santoor, violin, toy xylophone, composer, mixing
- Katharine Blake / recorder
- Sarah Measures / saxophone, clarinet, flute
- Khyam Allami / drums

- Johnny Karma / vocals (1)
- Shona Davidson / vocals (2)
- James Larcombe / piano (1), vocals (11)
- Ben Jacobs / trumpet (4,5,8), keyboards (8)
- Crawford Blair / bass (5)

Releases information

Artwork: Steve Mitchell

CD Believers Roast ‎- BRR002 (2009, UK)

LP Believers Roast ‎- BRR002LP (2009, UK)

Digital album

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KNIFEWORLD Buried Alone - Tales of Crushing Defeat ratings distribution

(33 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(15%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(33%)
Good, but non-essential (33%)
Collectors/fans only (15%)
Poor. Only for completionists (3%)

KNIFEWORLD Buried Alone - Tales of Crushing Defeat reviews

Showing all collaborators reviews and last reviews preview | Show all reviews/ratings

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by Slartibartfast
COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator / In Memoriam
4 stars Buried Alone: Tales Of Crushing Defeat is certainly one of my more interesting musical discoveries for 2009. I've recently run into a few new artists with male and female duet vocals: Phideaux, Pure Reason Revolution, The Reasoning, and will have to add Kavus Torabi's Knifeworld to the list of really good newer progressive artists in this vein.

The big names will always grab the attention but don't let the lesser knowns pass you by. What we have here is to a big extent a Torabi solo project, with Kavus on most of the instruments and playing a major vocal role, but the supporting musicians really bring the album all together, especially the extra vocalists and Kyam Allami's drum work. In addition to the extra vocalists, there's wind instrumentation including recorder, saxophone, clarinet, flute by Sarah Measures. As I write a few notes about these musicians, I realize I really don't know anything much about them, but I hope to hear more from them in the future. This is my first encounter with any of them and I'm really enjoying what I'm hearing.

As to describing the music, there's a lot of variety and only bits that I can relate to some of the great progressive music of days of old. I don't see them as being overly imitative of the great stuff that was done in the past while not turning their back on it. It's a nicely balanced mixture of heavy, the less heavy, and the occasional light moments, but overall there's a wonderful intensity to it all. Mid period Gentle Giant and Kayak come to mind. For Kayak particularly the frenetic style used for the song Pissed Up On Brake Fluid. For Gentle Giant, it's definitely in the wind instruments, but also in the complexity of the music (not to say that Kayak couldn't get complex). The lyrics are by and large bleak when you read them to the music. The album comes across as more upbeat if you listen to it first without doing that. My favorite song is the ending piece Me To The Future Of You. You get some really moving duet vocals, it has a good length to it and wraps up the album nicely.

I'd also like to put in a kind word for putting this album out in a nicely designed cardboard sleeve with a lyric booklet. I hate "jewel" cases.

Review by Sagichim
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars Now this album is awesome!!

This was one of the finest discoveries I had last year, I just couldn't stop listening to it, something about it just grabbed me and I couldn't let go. There's something haunting about this album, I'm not sure if it's the sound or its weird tinged melodies, but when that freight train is coming out of nowhere and easily runs you over, it actually feels like holy water are cleansing your soul, you simply can't be happier. Knifeworld are a London based solo project of Kavus Torabi which had been circulating the Avant scene (as well as other scenes too) until joining the Cardiacs as a guitarist in 2003. The ideas for Knifeworld had been always on his mind but it wasn't until 2008, when Cardiacs went into hiatus, that he formed the band, obviously they had a lot of influence on him. For their debut recording, Torabi played most of the instruments himself (guitars, bass, keyboards, violins and other instruments) as well as singing the majority of the lead vocals, writing, producing and arranging all of the material. The album sounds rich because of its varied instrumentation recorded by various other members, Flutes, Saxophone, Trumpet and piano were added as well as additional female vocals by Melanie Woods which is a permanent member of Knifeworld.

"Buried Alone..." is the logical continuation of Monsoon Bassoon sole album, which was Torabi's ex band, he also brought with him Sarah Measures who contributed saxophone, clarinet and flute on both albums. Another shining star in the line up is drummer Khyam Allami which is also a permanent member of the band, everything he does is simply stunning, very complex and powerful, he really pushes the music forward, giving it a lot of edge.

Given the Cardiacs relations, I thought this would be much more popular than it is, but I think this unique work is flying out of everyone's radar, and that is a real shame. Although this is listed under Crossover don't expect any poppish or too accessible vocals or any cheerful vibe for that matter, the album is actually going inside subtle avant garde territories very often, you might say it's hiding in just about every song appearing in the shape of weird vocals, quirky leads and other weird fillings by sax, trumpet flutes and more.

The album is quite varied and it's something that you can feel right from the start, it is well balanced between heavy moments and....well... not so heavy moments. The first thing that grabbed me were the melodies, they have a beautiful weird vibe to it, the mixing of both male and female vocals really complements the heavy music, Melanie Woods is definitely doing a great job, and I give Torabi a lot of credit for arranging the whole thing, this is really professionally done. I like how their voices are contrasting each other, while Melanie is chanting like a little girl. It is one of those albums that make you think "who the hell needs long instrumentals?", the songs are effectively powerful, don't get me wrong, there is definitely a looooooooooot of playing to enjoy. The playing is quite complex and reminds me of Gentle Giants on a few occasions, especially when they add those sax and trumpets.

Buried Alone... rocks quite heavily with some crushing guitars, that somehow manages not to cross the border to heavy metal city. The vocals and wind instruments are wove cleverly inside that heavy sound while in the meantime takes you in a totally different direction, this is really exciting. There are no fillers and not even one dull moment, this is one unique tour de force featuring some unpredictable complex twists and surprising quick turns on top of a relentless and tight heavy rocking rhythm.

Check out "The Wretched Fathoms" which has one element the band came to be an expert with. Crushing guitars are squeezing your brain with disturbing but serene vocals that somehow found their way into the mix, make you think "How did they think of it?" "Severed Of Horsehoof" is a beautiful break from all the heaviness. Its beautiful and relaxing intro immediately drains my powers and I'm left with no ability to move while the song keeps haunting me. Calm verses with acoustic and electric guitars which complete each other perfectly shows this album has a lot of depth. "No More Dying" is another clear favorite of mine, it seems it is so easy for them coming out with a weird and zany intro played by quiet saxophones, and then destroy it with a sledgehammer, while still managing to be complex and straight forward all together, exhilarating really!

This album sets the bar very high for the next album, and although expectations can turn into disappointments, I can't help but sit in anxious anticipation. Torabi is taking his time and although Knifeworld have released two EPs since the album, he found time to participate on Guapo's latest album too. I hope to see more people turning into this one of a kind album, it would mostly appeal to any Cardiacs fan or anyone who enjoy chili peppers and chocolate pineapples on top of his pizza.

4.2 stars, very recommended!!

Review by Mellotron Storm
4 stars Probably the best KNIFEWORLD album right here, the debut from 2009 although "The Unravelling" which follows this is right there too. Kavus the leader just came out of CARDIACS who had just disbanded and he would later play with GUAPO and GONG just to show how in demand he has been.

He wears his influences on his sleeves as they say with that opener bringing CARDIACS to mind big time. This really is a vocal album, I mean it always seems like we're getting multi-vocals coming at us, but it's also a powerful record. That hazy Psychedelic section on the next track "The Wretched Fathoms" brings Steve Hillage and GONG to mind and there's more of that CARDIACS vibe on the next song "Corpses Feuding Underground" but then I start to hear just this band the rest of the way for the most part. Kind of cool and surprising that Kavus brought in Andy's mellotron, the Andy from that great mellotron site Planet Mellotron. So we get it first on "No More Dying" and then on "Unwreckaged" where keyboards and atmosphere abound until it kicks into gear to this very catchy and heavy sound. Mellotron on my favourite track "The Money Shot" and this mid paced and powerful as vocals join in and the mellotron sounds best here.

Avant Pop, powerful and vocals are the words that come to mind when I think of this album. Far from perfect but every CARDIACS fan should own them some KNIFEWORLD.

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