Light Bearer/Northless
Split 12"

Here’s a vinyl split LP with some amazing potential. Light Bearer‘s first LP, 2011’s Lapsus was one of the very best releases of last year while Wisconsin’s Northless have steadily improved over the two releases I have heard in 2010’s No Quarter for the Damaged and last year’s Clandestine Abuse LP. I’m not going to sugarcoat it, my love for Light Bearer and Fall of Efrafa is simply going to win out here, not that it is a competition.

Light Bearer‘s song is a 21-minute behemoth called “Celestium Apocrypha: Book of Watchers” and (I assume) bridges the concept started on Lapsus and the Beyond the Infinite: The Assembly of God EP (which I have not heard) and continuing with the forth coming Silver Tongue full-length. Though it sounds a little more raw and analogue in its sound, it’s what you’d expect from Light Bearer and some of the folks responsible for Fall of Efrafa; sprawling, epic, atmospheric and highly intellectual/religious themed post-rock.

The song starts with a couple of minutes of distorted noise and programming, that initially had me a little perturbed before I detected some delicate acoustics in the background slowly coming to the forefront, signaling the start of the song for real. Then it’s 17 minutes of bliss, with rumbling, moody post-rock heaving and ebbing with a nice long hymnal and introspective section about 10 and a half minutes in, reaching a wilting, epic crescendo around the 18 minutes mark. The track doesn’t quite grab me as immediately as any of Lapsus‘ highlights but it’s a stop gap until the new LP and for that I’m thankful.

Northless provide two tracks in “Tears From Crime” and the dramatically named “For As Long As You Shall Walk the Earth, Your Blood Will Reek of Failure”. Both again show an improving band in the post-rock/sludge genre, but they are yet to be a good as Light Bearer (my personal opinion of course). Northless have a great, more earthy, sludgy tone and forceful vocals that gets right to it with the burly opening of “Tears From Crime”. The second, longer track has more shifts and tempo changes with some discordant lurching and patient doom riffs, though it seems to end a bit suddenly. Still, the band again has taken step towards being better and I reckon their next release will put them over the top.

That being said, I’m not going to lie, despite being two quality songs, I get a bit of a feeling that Northless is along for the ride as the (again excellent) art and packaging of this release seems more purely pure Light Bearer based release, continuing the looks and quality of the previous Light Bearer releases and Northless‘ songs were tacked on. I’m sure that’s not the case at all though, and they do add 15 minutes or so of quality extra music.

Still, yet another quality reason from Halo of Flies to acquire a record player.

[Visit the band's website]
Written by E. Thomas
August 28th, 2012

Comments

  1. Commented by: Shane

    Want.

    And I still need to pick up Light Bearers other release


  2. Commented by: Halo of Flies

    Thanks for the review!!

    Shane- Light Bearer – lapsus Dlp to repressed soon!

    new NORTHLESS 10″ coming in fall…


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