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The Eye of Every Storm

Wednesday, Jul 21 2004
Iconoclastic local band Neurosis has built a feverishly loyal cult of fans with its lumbering mix of viscous down-tuned riffs, ambient electronic drones, tribal drumming, and strangulated vocals. But let's face it, ponderous 10-minute epics and extreme loud-versus-quiet dynamics aren't every metalhead's cup of tea. The Eye of Every Storm overcomes the tedium that often plagued past Neurosis efforts by giving the listener some haunting melodies to latch onto amid the alternately furious and desolate soundscapes. Crafting a near-symphonic mudslide out of densely layered guitars, analog synth washes, and weird samples that range from what sounds like a parking garage collapsing (on the thunderous opener, "Burn") to glitchy Morse code and digital static (on the speaker-punishing "Bridges"), the band develops a minor-key, Floydian melancholy that sustains the tangents into whispered vocals and spare sonics without killing the album's momentum. Any heshers who have written these guys off as boring, take note: Neurosis has captured a compelling balance of apocalyptic industrial freakout and tuneful payoff.

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Dave Pehling


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