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Labradford - Labradford CD (album) cover




Post Rock/Math rock

4.55 | 10 ratings

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Mellotron Storm
Prog Reviewer
5 stars My rating certainly reflects my personal taste in music. After listening to this for the first time I immediately put on their next album "Mi Media Naranja" because everyone feels that is their best album. I didn't after that first spin so I did the rare thing and have been listening to two albums by the same band for over a week now. I feel more strongly than ever that this their self titled release from 1996 is by far the best I've heard from them. These guys are from Richmond, Virginia. Been through that state many times over the years and the music here is quite dark and minimalistic. They were a trio of guitar, vocals, keyboards and bass. Some guest violin on here too. The vocals are pretty much spoken. This is the ultimate headphone album with the way the guitar echoes and reverbs along with other sounds generated by keyboards and more.

A great example of this is the opener called "Phantom Channel Crossing" where we here what sounds like chains and clanking sounds as a deep atmosphere rolls in. It's dark as the soundscape vibrates. Some heavy beats like a heart beat join in after a minute. A strange high pitched noise comes in over top as well. Chains are back late and this is music for the imagination for sure.

"Midrange" has a beat with guitar that echoes along with atmosphere. It becomes louder as the violin joins in. It's even louder before 1 1/2 minutes as almost spoken vocals arrive, sounds like organ too. The vocals stop a minute later as the beat and organ lead. More vocals along with that earlier sound after 3 1/2 minutes as themes are repeated. It's moving to me after 4 1/2 minutes with that violin. Picked guitar and atmosphere end it.

"Pico" is my favourite. So moving! We get bass and organ as picked guitar joins in then almost whispered vocals. So melancholic as synth-like sounds come in over top. It turns dark before 2 1/2 minutes, so good! That uplifting and emotional sound is back after 3 1/2 minutes with vocals. "The Cipher" has percussion-like sounds and atmosphere to start. A high pitched sound arrives just before a minute. Some violin scratching too. Love the atmosphere after 1 1/2 minutes. Love this stuff!

"Lake Speed" opens with pulsating sounds as drums and guitar expressions kick in. Vocals and organ before a minute. Vocals as usual are almost spoken. Picked guitar a minute in. He says "The clock is ticking..." then urgent sounds come in over top before it calms back down. Themes are repeated. Incredible to my ears and it's moving after 3 minutes.

"Sonic Recovery" has a beat with faint guitar as distant vocals join in. It's louder just before a minute but settles back again. Violin after 1 1/2 minutes as the beat, guitar and vocals continue. It's louder again. "Battered" ends it and it's the longest track at almost 8 minutes. Atmosphere with organ and different sparse sounds as the vocals join in. It's moving me here. It does brighten some before 1 1/2 minutes but it's brief. This will happen again at 2 1/2 minutes but again it's brief. Some sinister sounding bass lines take over before 4 minutes then the guitar at 4 minutes echoes. Nice. Some organ-like sounds too.

One of the better Post-Rock albums I've heard for sure and I'll be reviewing several more as I try to come up with a personal top 20 in the coming weeks.

Mellotron Storm | 5/5 |


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