1. East 2. South 3. West 4. North2019 Pelagic Records
Philadelphia's Rosetta have been consistently churning out well above average post metal for the better part of 13 years now. An alumnus of Translation Loss Records, one of the front-running labels of the genre, the group has been self-releasing material since their 2013 full-length, The Anaesthete. Perhaps not so coincidentally, Rosetta's sound has also broadened in that time, expanding the breadth and balance of both their heavier and mellower tendencies. While Translation Loss does not come across as a label likely to discourage experimentation, the freedom of going it without representation would certainly allow an artist to create exactly what they want, when they wanted. And their new EP is proof positive of just that. Sower Of Wind serves as a quasi companion to Rosetta's 2017 album, Utopiod. While the band has, in the past, released complementary pieces (their first album was a double disc separated into heavy and ambient sides), they've stated that this is not the case with Sower Of Wind. However, even if it may not be meant to accompany Utopiod, it is an expansion of concepts that are the foundation to that album's more ambient backdrop. The four tracks that make up this EP, each named after a cardinal direction on a compass, move subtly along a base of sparse piano and synth arrangements. There is no vocal; there is no percussion; this is strictly Rosetta exploring cosmic soundscapes. And as they do with their heavier material, the group excels at delivering compelling arrangements in this format. Sower Of Wind moves along at a quiet crawl, invoking moods of darkness and desolation. Themes rise and fall through washes of droning pitches and swirling ambience. The first two tracks, "East" and "South," draw heavily from Brian Eno's Ambient 1 record, with minimalist piano lines cutting through the murky undertones. On "West," it's a soft electric piano sound that provides momentum for the piece. But the album really comes to a head with its closer, "North." The most 'musical' and approachable track on the album, it builds further upon the groundwork laid by the previous three, providing a melodic guitar build up that drops out into a quiet piano line. It's a call back to the EP's opening moments, signaling a complete revolution around the compass, beginning the cycle again. Bottom Line: This isn't the pummeling version of Rosetta, this is the band exploring and experimenting with ideas perhaps left unfinished. Sower Of Wind isn't for everyone – if you need your riffs and growls, you might be wise to stick with the band's full-lengths. But for anyone that enjoys darker and mellower soundscapes, this is surely one to check out.
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thetowerofrome 1/28/2019 2:47:45 PM
Also I've been meaning to give this a listen.