on 17 February 2008
What can you really say about this album that hasn't already been said? It's a classic in every respect. Neurosis are one of the few pioneering metal bands that were almost completely overlooked by the mainstream, the reasons are obvious, but you'd have thought they'd receive a little more recognition at festivals & the like.
Through Silver in Blood was the album that almost got them noticed.
The very nature of TSIB however was it's own downfall. Check out these track lengths;
Through Silver in Blood 12:11
Locust Star 5:48
Strength of Fates 9:43
Become the Ocean 1:27
Enclosure in Flame 10:19
What radio station/festival promoter would touch them with a barge pole? Billy Anderson's incredibly dense, sludgy production set it aside from the polished sounds of Pantera, Sepultura (circa 1996) and Machine Head.
In the underground may they forever rule.
TSIB is just an absolute monolith of a record. Even the quieter moments are filled with a crawling intensity and dread. The heavy sections are absolutely pummelling; powerful tribal drumming; scraping distorted bass; at times a triple vocal attack. It's just something really to behold rather than listen to. It demands your attention.
As you can probably tell, Neurosis are one of my favourite bands. Their passion, vision and integrity towards their music is incredible. Instead of making a joke out of it like Mike Patton, they channel it into several different eclectic musical outlets, (Tribes of Neurot, Blood & Time, Steve Von Till & Scott Kelly both do solo acoustic work, Battle of Mice, Harvestman, etc.). All this experimenting makes their ideas and vision stronger when they once again converge to create another monster album as Neurosis.
The music on Through Silver in Blood is so layered and dense, multiple listens will only just scrape the surface of what's happening; it's quite an experience & when you get to know it there aren't many metal albums which can surpass it. It's even catchy....... STARS! Reign dooooown oooon youuuu.....
Essential for those into dark, heavy music and have an attention span longer than three minutes.
on 2 October 2010
I'm surprised this has received so few reviews as to me this is pretty much the pinnacle of extreme metal. I'm almost hesitant in using the term 'metal' as I think it transcends the moniker. It's more a work of art. I can only sum it up as a dense soundtrack to the end of the world as the sea floods all and everything.
I bought this album at the time of release, having not heard any Neurosis prior and it totally blew me away. It still does today and is probably what I'd consider the heaviest album I own. It has a multi-layered dark atmosphere that can be both cataclysmic and depressingly beautiful at the same time.
It might not be to everyones tastes as songs are long and slow, dynamic, thick and doomy with a tribal percussion feel (particularly in the title track) running through the album and guitars that sound almost organic at times, riffs seemingly rolling and folding in on themselves before crashing on a virtual shore of a dying world.
I don't really know what else to say except that this is an AWESOME album in every respect and it has an epic sense of scale. It's not easy listening but for those that like heavy, noisy, slow, cinematic type metal (if that is such a thing) then you should buy this album without hesitation. Discover it an don't turn back. It might change your view of what "heavy" is.
on 7 September 2009
Often known for experimentation, Neurosis have sifted through the realms of metal and ended up at a crossover. When, for most, the road is blocked, Neurosis merely skip by it and create something that puts most other bands to shame. Experimentation has always been in their nature and I daresay it always will be. Throughout the career of the band, which has spanned many years, Neurosis have been tagged everything from doom to post-hardcore, from progressive to sludge. Truth of the matter is, no one can really define Neurosis. Their sound eludes every genre you could even attempt to pin it down to. Their sound expands and escapes the supposed inescapable territories of metal. Whilst the majority considers most genres and sub-genres within metal to have a particular sound, or certain characteristics that each and every band within it's grasp adheres to, Neurosis seem to forget that and create something that can only stand on it's own. Neurosis are, in truth, a mixture of things. An enigma, if you will. In fact, one could state, even from the beginning when they were mostly considered a hardcore punk band, that Neurosis were any one particular genre. Where there have been boundaries, the Californian based act have broken them down. Where there have been obstacles, the Californian based act have destroyed whatever it is that lays in their path. It is hard to believe, but `Through Silver In Blood' is the fifth full-length in Neurosis' career. It is, by many, considered to be the pinnacle achievement and the most outstanding work within the metal genre. Whilst this may seem like a deliberate exaggeration on my part, to those familiar with Neurosis and the inner circles of metal, that probably doesn't seem that far-fetched a statement. Although most Neurosis records seem to breach the one hour mark, `Through Silver In Blood' is truly an epic journey. Perhaps this sounds clichéd, but it is the only description one can give for such a mammoth record.
In regards to previous efforts, `Through Silver In Blood' represents the first time in the North American bands career that all elements of their experimental nature came together in perfect harmony. Whilst I, personally, consider `A Sun That Never Sets' to be their defining effort, this is the pinnacle, as I previously stated, to the majority of people around the world. It consists of the best elements that Neurosis have shifted together in one recording. Take songs like `Locust Star' for example. This song exudes confidence. The band were in their prime at this particular moment in time. This song begins with mesmerising drums, which continue throughout the record, not just the song and an ambience that Neurosis have long since devoured and spat out. In terms of the atmospheric nature of this record, it's a lot more punishing that previous efforts and more recent records. In comparison to something like `The Eye Of Every Storm' which was more subtle in it's approach, this record is blunt, brash and exposed. It allows the audience to see the true talents that are behind the instruments. `Locust Star' was actually the very first Neurosis song I had ever heard. I remember the first time I heard it, sitting quietly, stunned and motionless, the song caused me to alter my mood and reflect upon everything under the sun. The odd thing about this Neurosis treat is that, personally, I consider this to be the bleakest Neurosis effort because of it's dark and dismal soundscapes that surround the bare bones of the album.
For instance, I point out `Locust Star' again, the influence of the bass on the record is superb. I love it when bands utilize the bass for all it's worth and Neurosis do this on their fifth effort. The bass is constant and creative. It knows when to take center stage, when to back off and it's concise and precise nature is everything that the bass section needs in order to be successful. There are times when bass will take the band in the direction it wants to go and will enhance the dark atmospheres that this record revolves around. Being such talented song writing and musicians allows Neurosis, as always, to incorporate other elements into their music. For example, piano sections, played in low notes that further develop the dark styling of the sound. Tribal influences have long since been a factor in Neurosis' music and `Through Silver In Blood' is no different. Synthesizers utilize the tribal sound well. Creating an abundance of rhythmic space like sounds that swirl and twirl around the guitars, the bass and even the steady percussion section. Vocally, Neurosis are the same as they always are. Scott Kelly has a distinctive voice and is able to carry the sound that the band portrays very well. His voice is rather gruff, so it's dark and low sound flows alongside the superb melodies very well and creates a melody of it's own. Vocals don't have to be great, they just have to be suitable to the music. My main problem with this Neurosis effort, well, my only problem is the lyrics. In the past, I have enjoyed reading and listening to the lyrics being spouted out by Scott Kelly at the helm, but the lyrics present on this effort seem a shade poor in comparison to other efforts like `A Sun That Never Sets' or `The Eye Of Every Storm'. For example, the lyrics to the title track, whilst they could be considered appealing to the senses as they deal with very human emotions and use words that humans can relate to, they don't really have the same affect as other Neurosis lyrics have had.
"Through silver in blood
We stand judged not by
Eyes of flesh, when
Transit times cross
Prey vision consumed
Although, especially lyrically, this may not be my favourite Neurosis full-length, one cannot doubt the sheer intensity or power of it. It has stood the test of time and only continues to enhance the reputation of this already much loved band. Classic, in many people's eyes.
on 7 March 2001
Recently, much has been made of the many artists combining "electronica" (a hideous term for such brilliant music) and traditional rock music, citing bands such as Nine Inch Nails, Pitchshifter and - more recently - Radiohead. People overlook Neurosis, who have consistently been at the cutting edge of rock music for many years. This album is not just heavy, but takes the listener on a journey through tribal percussion, samplescapes, electronic ambience, hardcore metal and so much more. It is a remarkable overview of our society and the struggle between the "progress" of humanity and the plight of nature. Tracks are (up to) 12 minute lessons in dynamics, aesthetics, spirituality and catharsis. If that sounds a bit pretentious, the album could also be seen to contain seven of the best songs you will ever hear, simple as that. This CD cannot be recommended highly enough. Perseverence is required with what at first seems a blend of impenetrable sound, but once you find the requisite empathy, the rewards far outweigh the effort. A must for fans of guitar-based music, but recommended to all. There is so much more to say, and those interested should feel free to contact me by email. P.S. I am in no way affiliated with the band, other than being very appreciative of their music.
on 15 March 2006
this is a superb album yet again from neurosis,make no mistake of that,i love it,it is really slow at times,those who know neurosis know that this is stating the obvious,but this is slower than 'a sun that never sets' for example,but the dense and claustrophobic sounds lead into fury and rage in such an amazing way,the key song is 'aeon',it starts with a haunting piano start and then rocks with more venom than a cage of cobras,and just after 6 minutes into it is a three minute riff that is just sensational,it is so powerful and moving,if i was at a neurosis gig and they played this i would get on my knees and praise the band and god for letting me be part of this,as for the other 8 songs,some are instrumentals and there are a few soundbytes thrown in to add to what is an excellent piece of work