There are many bands that draw inspiration from the mysterious, dreamlike, simply weird world of the American novelist H. P.Lovecraft. One such band can be found also on the Czech scene, though you would look for it in vein within the metal genre. What we refer to is POSTCARDS FROM ARKHAM, a post-rock project, whose mastermind is Marek “Frodys” Pytlik, who arose from the iconic North Moravian doom act DISSOLVING OF PRODIGY, as well as from the melodic death metal band AWRIZIS. Now PFA return with their second studio album with a cryptic fateful title “ÆØN5” that will take you to the world of lucid dreaming beyond angled space, where a different music of the spheres reigns supreme.
Already the first album of POSTCARDS FROM ARKHAM, entitled “Oceanize”, was a breath of fresh air on the Czech not only metal scene. “ÆØN5” goes way further. Once again, maestro Frodys took care of all music and instrumentation and conjured up a unique mix of nostalgic and poetic post-rock sound combined with a horror narrative. Here and there even an isolated black metal scream appears, more often however a splendidly sounding spoken word, uttered for example by the diva Lenka Machová from ADOR DORATH, who besides that participated on the visual and lyrical side of the album. State-of-the-art production was brought in by Libor Kukula from MetalGate
Howard Philips Lovecraft and his “weird fiction” is one those instances that show how whimsical fate can be. Neglected in life and delegated to the margins of pulp literature, today a literary icon, whose work serves as an inspiration to countless other artists across the cultural spectrum. The Czech scene is not an exception. Take POSTCARDS FROM ARKHAM for example, a post-rock/metal project by Marek Frodys Pytlik that translates Lovecraft’s legacy into its music, and that is now releasing under MetalGate Records its already third studio album entitled “MANTA”. Those who are familiar with PFA, may be surprised that the new album is somewhat darker and rawer than its predecessors. It is so because the intent was to create a counterpoint to the previous piece “ÆØN5”, both music-wise and theme-wise. While “ÆØN5” built on Lovecraft’s so-called “dream cycle”, which are stories having as their common denominator phantasmal dreamscapes that make them in a way lighter and more colorful compared to the rest of his works, “MANTA” heads into the utterly nonhuman and unfathomable cosmic voids of Lovecraftian cosmology – that is, into vistas ruled by the Demonic Sultan Azathoth, Lord of All, and to which to gain entrance entails transgressing the boundaries of the angled space, which is to say to leave behind that which we perceive as reality. Hence the contrast.
PILLARS is an American four piece, primarily instrumental, post-rock band from Indianapolis, Indiana. Each member comes from various musical pasts, and this diversity has fostered a unique sound that blends indie-rock and post-rock.
On their latest full-length, _of Salt and Sea_, PILLARS' distinct mesh of musical colors is on full display, as the band takes listeners on an aural voyage full of thoughtfully crafted peaks and plunges.
Due out on Indianapolis label In Store Recordings on Dec. 15, _of Salt and Sea_ marks the bands most complete release to date, while also marking their first entirely instrumental collection of songs. From the towering "Salt" to the succinct yet stunning "Subtract/Submerge," the album delivers a rejuvenated post-rock sound that pushes the boundaries of the genre to stratospheric new levels.
PILLARS has played alongside established instrumental bands such as Pelican, and indie juggernauts The Appleseed Cast, The Get Up Kids, The World Is A Beautiful Place And I Am No Longer Afraid To Die, and more.
Hellenica fuses dark ambient type instrumentals with elements of drone, doom, chant and spaghetti – western guitar melodies.
A 3 song EP They Are Out For Blood was released in March of 2012. It was followed by a full length album Blood Moon Wolf Head in November of 2014. The most recent album Forms was released in April of 2016 via Montréal label Jeunesse Cosmique. After the release of Forms Hellenica toured Europe in November 2016 performing in Germany, Czech Rep., and Netherlands.
Jim Demos grew up in the west-end’s industrial part of Winnipeg among rusted train yards and crumbling storage facilities. Aside from the years of searching out obscure metal albums as a kid, he later became interested in the Chicago, San Diego, Chapel Hill music scenes, shoe-gazer bands of the early 90’s, and the kraut-rock/experimental scene of the 70’s. Even though these styles could be heard in earlier projects, an ethnic influence was always present in his writing. When a child, his family would visit the Greek orthodox church on special occasions where he first heard the greek orthodox choir. Later on Jim became interested in spaghetti-western films and their soundtracks, and has taken these two influences as a canvas to work off of.
His past projects and collaborations include guitarist/vocals/writer in the noise rock band Ham, bass/writer in shoe-gazer band National Monument and guitarist/writer in Gothic western band The Dead Letters. Jim is also co-writer in the Golden Tombs.
Exploring the depths of 70's and 80's sci-fi soundtracks, Scraps, notes and ideas fused together to create a soundtrack to a fictional sci-film entitled: Land of no Return. This album was recorded digitally then mastered through a 1970's DENON 5L-40 REEL TO REEL TAPE MACHINE found in an antique shop in Sainte Anne-de-Bellevue, Quebec. Instruments used were: Various midi instruments, a Fender bass guitar, samples, Roland SH2000 synth, guitar drones, ebo, Sampletron.
Steven K. Smith has more than 20 recording to his name both solo and collaboratively. He was the founding member of the post rock outfit MABOU from Cleveland, Ohio. His also worked with Jason Sloan in the acclaimed dark ambient project DOLMEN. In addition to A Signal In The Static he is a member of SPIRICOM with Columbus, Ohio guitarist Marc Cody. Smith lives outside of Kent, Ohio on a farm with his wife and a menagerie of animals.
A Signal In The Static is a sonic flood whose immense current blurs the line between cleansing and obliterating. The unrelenting, multi-textured wash of synthesizers and heavily processed guitars is propelled by expansive, driving bass and percussion that is equal parts primal and mechanical. Throughout its massive presence, A Future Remembered swells with layers of melody that penetrate its dense landscape and supply a constant tidal force. As the galactic waves surge and dissolve, they purge the earthly terrain in their wake.
Dan Caine is ambient/post-rock musician from Merseyside, England. A pioneer in the movement, Caine uses powerful, layered guitar melodies to create an atmosphere of an intense range of thought and emotion as he explores the depths of the human psyche. His music is a free-flow of subconscious urge and instinct; a deep dive into the unhindered world of the Id. Much like a fine wine, these meditative works expose more and more of their depth with each listen, and like a mood ring, they morph and change to reflect the state of the listener perceiving them. Caine’s music is also richly melodic and is layered with vibrant textures, created primarily from his collection of guitars, producing brooding atmospheres and serene sonic landscapes.
The Jackson Pollock of ambient post-rock, Caine is a master of breaking music down to its most basic elements and arranging them in a work of abstract purity. This enables the listener to explore their own connections to the sound and engage with the piece less as a listener, and more as an observer of aural art. His music is broad and guiding, yet flexible and undemanding, allowing the observer space with which to process their own humanity within it.
Dan Caine, born in 1988 in Wirral, England, first picked up the guitar at age 15, inspired by a lot of alternative music, as well as his own father who played the classical guitar. He has had no formal musical training or tutoring, save for being taught a few basic chords from his father. He realized early on that making music was a great way of expressing himself and began recording his experimentations as a hobby. Eventually, in 2013, he published his first album, “Ephemeris”, which was a collection of some of his best ambient pieces that he had made of over the previous years. Since then, his music has evolved and has primarily drawn on influences from ambient, post-rock and new-age music.
GroundBurst is an instrumental rock trio whose sound strikes for the band’s kaleidoscopic approach and wide-open mindset. The band consists of Phil, Si, and Erik, respectively on guitars, bass & keys, and drums. These three talented musicians set out to create a lush, diverse and textural musical backdrop, borrowing from influences as diverse as electronic music, psychedelia, rock and even jazz with a minimalistic flair. Their recent release, “Triad” is an EP featuring 3 original compositions, as the title of the release might lead you to guess!
These Are Truly The Last Days is a musical project with a driven experimental twist. Their music blurs the lines between various genres, including ambient, electronica, glitch hop, and more. The project’s self-titled studio effort features 11 studio tracks.