By: Aidan Clucas
Kindler | website | facebook | bandcamp |
Kindler, from North Carolina, are a progressive rock band that are releasing their new album Cosmic Revelations. The band cite influences like Yes, ISIS, Mastodon, Tool, Karnivool, and Opeth and the first single released, ‘Light and Ash’, demonstrates the melodic and bass driven elements of these acts. Listening to the full album, however, it is clear that the ground covered is much more expansive than mere band comparisons can explain.
The album opens with ‘Aphasia’, which despite its short length is huge. Cradling all which the album will eventually explore, focusing mostly on the thick, straining vocals, and heavy guitar riffs. The following song ‘Mourning Ours’ demonstrates the more grandiose experiments that Kindler attempt on this album. Depth in musical passages and musical intricacy is integral to the foundation of Cosmic Revelations. Just a quick flick through ‘Remembrance’ or the title track will show this; of course, don’t flick through, these particular songs deserve to be listened to for their full breadth.
The album isn’t entirely driven by musical astonishment and heavy guitar riffs. ‘Waves’ explores elements more akin to Yes; the quasi-folk passages that make the music feel like it’s from the 15th century instead of our own. ‘Ironheart’ too gives the album a short but well-earned break after the progressive epic ‘Remembrance’. ‘Scars’ is a, possibly slightly misplaced, acoustic guitar piece but don’t let this fool you; it is still a gathering of decent vocal melodies harmonising over a full, thick, and clever acoustic guitar part. Even when elements are stripped back Kindler will still find a way to impress.
Cosmic Revelations should be an important album to Kindler; here is a body of work to be proud of, and for a listener to embrace. Not only is satisfying on an instrumental, musical, and technical level, but it also is well arranged, and a listen from bow to stern feels like a true journey; the title track to close is a jovial way to end the album in as satisfying a way that only progressive music can deliver, a psyche-delving and emotion-spanning magical mystery. Very good from Kindler and if they can expand on this then all the power to them.