2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
This review is from: Rising Special (Audio CD)
Continuing where they left off, Neurosis are back with their tenth full-length record, a fantastic achievement. 'Given To The Rising' is an odd Neurosis record, it doesn't continue the trend of evolving, in my eyes. Neurosis have stood still for the first time in their career. 'Given To The Rising' is just a continuation of what 'The Eye Of Every Storm' started to experiment with. To be honest, that isn't a bad thing. The aforementioned full-length was one of Neurosis' best, in my opinion. It developed a new sound like Neurosis have never seen before. It's focused a lot more on progression in terms of atmosphere, whereas Neurosis used to focus on sound experimentation in terms of their former aggressive sound. Well, I say former, but it still continues today.
'Given To The Rising' has that spaced out feel 'The Eye Of Every Storm' had. This is largely due to the use of keyboards. They create a distinctive sound throughout, a sound that is very appealing to the senses in every human being. It's a sound that tends to twirl and swirl it's way around the instruments. Especially the guitars. Considering the fact Neurosis use two guitarists, it has a big job on it's hands, but still, it does a fantastic job of wrapping itself around those powerful riffs and keeping them, as well as the listener, enclosed in a small space from which the noise cannot escape anywhere but in to your ear drums and through your body. The title track is a particularly good indication of this swirling sound. The keyboards are used prominently throughout the song and they're used very well. As I also said, the use of two guitarists serves well to the atmosphere Neurosis have decided to spend much more time developing this time round. One guitarist plays one riff, whilst the other layers a different, yet more subtle sound on top of it. Neurosis do this superbly, it has to be said.
Progression in terms of vocals hasn't really been on the cards for a long time for Neurosis and it's a particular area that doesn't really require much change. What with the low sound of the guitars, the vocals guttural bombardment doesn't need to change. Whilst the keyboards give an airy feel to the music, the vocals aim to keep a bit of that aggression we're so used to alive and kicking. They do a fantastic job of it as well. There are times when the guitars revert back to how they were on full-lengths like 'A Sun That Never Sets' and produce a more advancing and aggressive touch. This is an element that should surely delight fans of the older sound, but also tweak their interests in this new, multi-dimensional sound. New fans will be acquired by 'Given To The Rising' as well, which can only be a good thing.
I'm a big fan of that tribal feel that hovers ever so closely in the background. It's unique and totally owned by Neurosis. I've never heard another band produced this sort of tribal feel and execute it so well. Hats off to Neurosis for that, again. Of course, it helps when you have fantastic musicians who can amply incorporate synths into the mix, as well as other instruments like keyboards, an organ and the piano. The songwriting has to be taken note of again, as well. Neurosis have been on top form for over a decade now when it comes to these imperative elements of music. Neurosis have always had good lyrics as well. Lyrics that tend to appeal massively to people who like to analyse them, as well as the senses. Using themes of nature and colour do this effectively.
"Of black to cut us down
Of white to light our sound
Of red to burn and drown
And grey to spread like ash to the ground"
As we can see. In terms of highlights, 'Given To The Rising', 'To The Wind' and 'Water Is Not Enough' should have audiences salivating uncontrollably.