Light Bearer
Silver Tongue LP

Featuring members of hardcore act Momentum and of course former Fall of Efrafa frontman Alex Bradshaw, the UK’s Light Bearer have quickly established themselves as one of atmospheric sludge/post rock’s most amazing bands, or one of the best metal bands of any genre for that matter with their stunning 2011 debut LP Lapsus and subsequent EP and splits (2012’s Split with Northless and the Beyond the Infinite: The Assembly of God EP.

Now, I have actually been listening to the music on Silver Tongue for a few months now, seeing as the band gave it away as a free download, but in order to fully appreciate Silver Tongue, it has to be held, handled and felt. Halo of Flies once again has done an absolutely stunning job of packaging Silver Tongue in a giant gatefold double LP, but with 2 separate sleeves for 2 LPs and each sleeve containing the incredibly detailed lyrics from each of the ‘characters’ telling the story of the great fall. Once again the brilliant artwork for all of the inlays and front/back covers is provided by Bradshaw and the result is just a stunning, complete package. Even more so when the needle hits the vinyl.

Silver Tongue is the direct follow up to the Lapsus LP, being second in a planned LP trilogy chronicling the fall of Lucifer in exquisite musical and lyrical detail and once again it’s hard to ignore musical comparisons to a d-beat-less Fall of Efrafa, Isis, Neurosis and other post rock luminaries, but with a denser layer of emotive and thematic heft. Acoustic/string builds, crumbling, heaving metallic crescendos, delicate soothing, segues and pained screamed vocals sprinkled with angelic clean vocal all come together to form something majestic, evocative and ultimately-moving.

As with Lapsus, (“Primen Movens” and “Lapsus”) the album is bookended by two absolutely brilliant standouts; “Beautiful is This Burden” and “Silver Tongue”, the latter track alone making this LP worth it by itself. “Beautiful is This Burden” opens with haunting cellos and a gorgeous, melancholy trumpet line delivering a motif and chord structure that seems to reprise itself throughout the album. The track then goes on a mesmerizing 18-minute journey of jangly, lurching post rock builds and ebbs and insertions of haunting atmospherics and calamitous peaks.

Before I get to “Silver Tongue” though, there are 3 other solid tracks (“Amalgam”, “Matriarch”, “Aggressor and Usurper”), and an interlude (“Clarus”) that are by no means chopped liver, it’s just that they don’t have the emotional gravity and brilliance of the bookend tracks, often being more direct, tough still rangy lumbering atmospheric post rock numbers. none of them quite hit that perfect musical G spot the opening and closing tracks do. “Aggressor and Usurper” delivers the albums most aggressive track with tribal pummeling beats and the most Neurosis sounding moods and structures before bridging suddenly into the closing title track’s sumptuous acoustic intro.

If the opener is mesmerizing, then the closing 20-minute title track and more importantly, its last 10 minutes is utterly profound. Recalling the opener’s somber trumpet theme, the track is patient and alluring for its first few minutes, but at 9:05 shifts into an utterly breathtaking, shimmering chord progression to die for and finally delivers some altar boyish clean vocals that come across as a hymnal or sermon delivered to wondrous cello work. It then peaks with truly, soul wrenching emotion and heft and debilitating closure as it ends with angelic host choirs and orchestration. It’s one of those truly special pieces of music that cuts right through you and physically affects you long after the track and album has ended.

It’s yet to be seen if this trilogy will be better than the brilliant Warren of Snares from Fall of Efrafa, but Light Bearer is certainly matching it with the first two releases. If the conclusion keeps up this unfathomable visual and musical quality, there is no question that Light Bearer can cement themselves as one of the most engaging acts in all of music.

[Visit the band's website]
Written by Erik T
July 29th, 2013

Comments

  1. Commented by: theorifice

    This sounds amazing and right up my alley. I’ve never heard of Light Bearer before but I’m going to be all up into this today.


  2. Commented by: Nick Taxidermy

    pretty so far.


  3. Commented by: stiffy

    Really enjoying this band.


  4. Commented by: Sweko

    I love this LP, I´ts one of my favorite bands ever.


  5. Commented by: Alex Drăgan

    Truly is an amazing album. I’ve been listening to it for about a week and I’m still impressed.


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