PELICAN (USA – Hydra Head masters of instro-metal)
JESU (new band of Godflesh mastermind Justin Broadrick)
DEADSUNRISING (West Brom mania
Unhindered by the impositions of the vocal yoke, Chicago instro-sorcerers Pelican transcend the limits of time and space to expound upon the stunning finesse and painstaking subtlety with which they command their already indelible sonic signature. Restoring instrumental composition to its former glory is no insignificant task, and to do so with such remarkable authority and presence is a testament to the sheer will and unmitigated talent of Pelican’s membership. Levying cinematic melody upon glacial heaviness, they achieve the sort of inevitability usually reserved for weather systems and natural disasters. Channeling the seasonal progressions of various far-flung landscapes, the sounds of Pelican are easily adaptable to both the active and passive listening experience, but their harmonic minutiae are best appreciated in a high-volume stereophonic headphone scenario. Successor to the critically acclaimed Untitled EP, Pelican’s debut full-length is a cyclical riptide of major-chord mastery and low-end triumph against which one can only abdicate any and all tendencies to resist total immersion.
Pelican’s seemingly sudden arrival on the Windy City’s (and now the world’s) underground circuit was in fact a deliberate agenda shift propagated by Laurent Lebec (guitar), Trevor de Brauw (guitar), and Larry Herweg (drums), then three-quarters of the relatively bizarre and deafening grind band Tusk (for further listening, see Tusk’s Get Ready on HeWhoCorruptsInc). With the addition of Larry’s younger brother Bryan on bass, Pelican’s imposing musical quadrangle was complete. The appearance of a four-song demo, recorded and mixed for a mere $300, followed. Like a large web-footed seabird with a long straight bill from which hangs a distensible pouch of skin for catching and holding fish, Hydra Head Records swooped down from on high to re-issue said demo as Pelican’s widely-lauded Untitled EP.
Within the year (that’d be this one), Pelican would become an integral component in the hugely successful and occasionally misunderstood Champions Of Sound tour, in conjunction with fellow Hydra Head and Tortuga heavyweights Harkonen, Scissorfight, The Austerity Program, Old Man Gloom, and 5ive.