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Maudlin Of The Well - Leaving Your Body Map CD (album) cover


Maudlin Of The Well


Experimental/Post Metal

4.15 | 361 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
4 stars I dunno... You figure it out...

Well, this feels like a long time coming. A lot of the better-regarded albums that I've known about for years certainly feel that way (and certainly I don't hide that I take my time and don't prioritize listenings like most). On to the review! haha

Jumping into records like this one, you just don't know what you're getting yourself into, and that's quite exciting to me. The sonic assortment you can find on this album ranges from jazzy Blackgaze (like if Black Metal was welcomed into Exotica Lounge?), cool yet simultaneously blazing Post-Hardcore (a sure highlight is "Gleam in Ranks"), wavering and unpredictable Post-Metal (see "Bizarre Flowers / A Violent Mist"; the end of which features a beautiful and relatively reserved, shredded guitar solo, followed by ethereal, melodic vocals reminiscent to me of CYNIC), and acoustic Classical (see "Sleep Is A Curse", possibly the least surprising song, compositionally).

I wasn't expecting to agree with the now 15-year-old review headline by user chamberry ("Good luck finding an audience..."). I'm unsure exactly who (especially at the turn of the millennium when this was released) would be interested in this album (I definitely know a few nowadays that might), especially with an opener like "Stones Of October's Sobbing". I'm unsure half the time how I even feel about all of this! I'm awe-inspired, for sure. And I'd say that's positive haha. The funny thing is that this sort of confusion comes as no surprise to me. A well constructed album though, in my opinion. The reprieve offered by tracks like "Interlude[s] 3" and "...4" is a welcomed surprise. Not surprising that they have the know-how or the (is it) wisdom(?) to place these as they did. Just glad to see it. Also a funny little quip, because... where are "Interlude[s] 1" and "2"?

Not a favorite of mine, but the creepy whisperings on the backend of the "The Curve That To An Angle Turn'd" reminded me of elements from Kate BUSH's The Ninth Wave (the exemplary, epic and, at times, dark-as-night second half to her beloved 1985 studio album Hounds of Love). I'll take it. Plenty of this album leaves me...unsettled... such as the beginning of "Riseth He, The Numberless, Pt. 2.", with far-off wailings of... I don't know who. I'm not sure if there's supposed to be a takeaway haha.

Overall, the production is very nice, showing off the whole space of the project from track to track. Open yet full. And the more unorthodox sonic choices (maudlin introduced to us as "Metal"), like bells, whistles, trumpet, flute and clarinet, really add to the ominous and free feeling of the near-genre-less offerings.

Personal Highlight Tracks: T3, T7

DangHeck | 4/5 |


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