Storm Corrosion — Storm Corrosion
(Roadrunner Records 1686-1764, 2012, CD)
by Paul Hightower, Published 2013-04-01I was surprised at the disappointment expressed in some corners about this disk. Many seem to have expected a collaboration between Steven Wilson (Porcupine Tree) and Mikael Akerfeldt (Opeth) to yield more in the way of fireworks, instead of what is undeniably a moody and somber record. Anyone familiar with Wilson's oeuvre knows to expect the melancholic, through Akerfeldt's background in Scandinavian metal stands in stark contrast to the pastoral and acoustic vibe laid out across most of these tracks. You won't get far into the opener, "Drag Ropes," before you can picture the two musicians sitting cross-legged on the floor with acoustic guitars out, their tape machines operated by candlelight. These textures are reinforced by Mellotron and piano, though acoustic guitar and voice (including some heavenly harmonies) form the backbone of each piece, with occasional guest turns by Ben Castle (woodwinds) and Gavin Harrison (percussion), who add flesh to the bones. Based on recent interviews, Wilson and Akerfeldt have bonded not only on musical terms but also over their tastes in cinema and literature. Songs like "Happy" and "Hag" conjure up the films of Ingmar Bergman or David Lynch, so if experienced on those terms the album is enchanting and compelling. And I challenge anyone to sleep through the instrumental "Lock Howl," with its Goblin-esque spunk, although the languid closer "Ljudet Innan" does echo Sigur Rós with waves of warm guitar and strings. Ending on that note your dreams are sure to be pleasant.
Roswell Rudd RIP – Jazz trombonist Roswell Rudd, one of the distinctive players of his instrument in many strains of music, has died at the age of 82. With a career stretching back to the early 60s and over a hundred recordings featuring his playing, he leaves behind a substantial legacy. He was diagnosed with cancer in 2013. » Read more
Celebrate 10 Years of Fruits de Mer – As a special celebration for a decade of cool vinyl releases, our friends at Fruits de Mer records have prepared a limited edition reissue of an album by the first band ever to appear on the label: Schizo Fun Addict. The band is known for unusual release strag » Read more
Mega Dodo Presents New Charity Album – Our friends at Mega Dodo have put together a lovely compilation of their artists performing new arrangements of nursery rhymes, and all the profits from sales of the album will benefit Save the Children. It features a number of artists we've covered. » Read more