Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Album Review- Giza -'Future Ruins'

Location: Seattle , WA,USA

Label: N/A

Track Listing:
                     1. Seance
                     2. Wake and Drag
                     4.Hour Of The Bullfight
                     5.Roaming Hordes
                     6.Great Leader

A self described 'Instrumental,Apocalyptic Sludge Metal' trio from that hallowed  birthplace of grunge and Frasier, Giza's Future Ruins was recorded by none other than Matt Bayles , he of Mastodon, Isis and Botch fame,and is probably one of the finest examples we've heard in months of exploratory, blissed out post-metal/sludge.

What strikes one is just how MASSIVE Giza sound despite only a three piece, helped in part by Bayles' trademark widescreen production values, that rendered already brilliant albums like Leviathan as modern classics.Every element of the instrumentation ,particularly the bass,is flawlessly mastered, and ,it has to be said, guitarist Richard Burkett's tone is to die for.As for the songs themselves, the general mood that pervades is not so much one unbearable  apocalyptic tension as it is one of meditative, textured nuance ,and a genuine and practiced sense of melancholy other bands of a similar ilk seem to struggle to attain.

That's not to say the band can't  rock out  with the best of them.Witness 'Hour of The Bullfight' , which could easily be an instrumental  off-cut from Baroness' classic Red , or the manner in which 'Great Leader' ebbs and flows with  an uneasy, feedback drenched menace.

One criticism that could be thrown at Giza of course would be that we've heard all this kind of cinematic gloom before, from  bands like Isis and Pelican,but quite frankly, when a collection of songs is this well written, recorded and performed, a slight lack of originality can be forgiven.A worthy journey ,and one that'll reward repeat listens.

Rating: 7.5/10

For fans of: Isis, Pelican, A Storm Of Light, People Of The Monolith

Listen to/buy the album here: http://giza.bandcamp.com/

Stephen O' Connor

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