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Russian Circles - Memorial

  by Paul Waller

published: 15 / 10 / 2013

Russian Circles - Memorial
Label: Sargent House
Format: CD


Enthralling fifth album from dark Chicago-based instrumental post-rock trio Russian Circles, which features a guest appearance on vocals from singer-songwriter Chelsea Wolfe

Listening to Chicago’s Russian Circles gives me chills. Not just because they are so good at what they do, but they literally play an icy and epic style of post rock that should have scored the soundtrack to Jeff Orlowski’s and James Balog’s recent ‘Chasing Ice’ documentary that focused on the melting of the Earth’s ice caps. Some of the pieces here are truly phenomenal and would fit seamlessly with the footage Orlowski and Balog managed to capture. The brooding metal leanings of ‘Deficit’ and the more hook laden soundscape of ‘1777’ would have usually been enough to captivate and demanded repeated listens from me. The songs’ lengths alone mean that with any repeat hearing you will always find something new. This I would have been more than content with alone. Elsewhere on the record the three piece shows little let up. From the feedback laden intro of ‘Burial’ to the guitar theatrics that perforate the whole of ‘Ethel’, there is no doubt that Russian Circles haven’t grown complacent for this. their fifth full length and yet for the final track the band leave ‘Memorials’ best moment till last. The title track features the washed out, ethereal tones of Chelsea Wolfe, and with it a whole new side to Russian Circles is brought into the light. Yep, the band’s intricate and tested dynamic works with vocals as well. To be honest the only disappointment the album brings is that it leaves you wanting more, not bad when you realise the album is forty minutes long already..

Track Listing:-
1 Memoriam
2 Deficit
3 1777
4 Cheyenne
5 Burial
6 Ethel
7 Lebaron
8 Memorial (feat. Chelsea Wolfe)

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