Posts Tagged ‘Split EP’

Pelagic Records – 29th January 2016

Christopher Nosnibor

Is the vinyl revival all a part of the mass cultural shift toward nostalgia? Were the ‘good old days’ really better, or is it simply that the present is so unbearable that the majority would seemingly wish to regress to the past? Of course, every generation has its old golden age, and it’s inevitable that the first years spent getting into anything new will sparkle the brightest with the passage of time. And so, for many, the late teens and early twenties are synonymous with ‘finding’ music and a sense of individual identity – but also a commonality. The more disaffected the youth, the more powerful the experience is likely to be.

Times have changed. Social relations are a different kind of minefield, and the music scene and industry more broadly are unrecognisable now from 20 years ago. Having recently turned 40, and as someone who spent a good decade from around the time I turned 14 hanging out and working in independent record shops and record airs, travelling to gigs and reading the weekly music inkies, I miss all of that.

This split EP is very much in the spirit of now bygone times, of record stores, of bands touring together with a shared record, and discovering new bands at gigs and bagging a chunk of vinyl (at an affordable price) at the merch stand on the way out to play at home when your ears had stopped ringing.

Whether or not the Internet has made the dissemination of music easier or better for bands isn’t the question here: it’s more about the fact that it’s stripped out all of the mystery. You can find music by any band on-line without having to venture to a toilet venue and take a punt on four bands for three quid, and similarly, you can ‘own’ the music on your iPod at a single click. Instant gratification has its downsides, and the wonder of discovery and the rush of connecting with a new band simply isn’t there in the digital age.

Cult of Luna and The Old Wind – two bands of significant standing, but too obtuse and heavy to ever trouble even the peripheries of the mainstream – evoke the spirit of the old-school on this vinyl release, which very much rewards the patient listener.

Cult of Luna offer ‘Last Will and Testament’, which is a veritable behemoth of a track which, after a delicate intro, slams in with full force. It’s a brutal beast, clocking in at an epic seven minutes – but it’s not all about the length, check the weight.

The first of the two tracks by The Old Wind, ‘Wooden Scythe’ brings a medieval fury through a barrage of guitars that hit like a battering ram, and the second, ‘Daughters of Cleanse’ delivers more of the same fire and brimstone. It’s gnarly, raw, dense and bloody. And very, very good.

Cult of Luna Old Wind Split