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Knifeworld - Buried Alone  - Tales Of Crushing Defeat CD (album) cover




Crossover Prog

3.75 | 29 ratings

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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!!

Sagichim | 4/5 |


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