Remember last year when we were praising Minnesota’s Amiensus and how they were this Black Metal/Pop amalgamation that was a necessary mindfuck bringing all the good things in the most roundabout way ever? No? Well, read about it here then. All finished? Then back to our point: Members of that outfit have returned in the year that is not 2020 with Comatose to further eff with the minds in a brand new way.
But I digress.
Billed as “A New Hope” (In our heads, at least), 2021 is supposed to be the year of promise, yeah? Meaning we don’t need a surprise hum record to drop somewhere up in here. That said, if you ARE in need of some hum-like noise then Comatose has got you covered. On A Way Back, the quartet that make up Comatose deliver a debut that’s loud, brazen, and filled with all the fuzzy underground bits that made your heart unexpectedly swell so much in the mid-’90’s.
At times, loud and brazen while at other times introspective and intricate, A Way Back is a daring deep dive into peak Alternative. “Circles” falls into the former category with James Benson and Adam Carroll’s guitars creating a formidable wall of riffage to start the record. On the other hand, “Gone” tends towards the latter as it brings brevity with the way the guitars interact with Jacob Carlson’s punishing drumming as Carroll and Benson’s vocal melodies cry to the heavens.
Further in, the way Daren Menz’s bass hums against these guitar screams during the concluding parts of “Alone” is synonymous with a Grungier time while “Skin” is a lumbering giant as it slogs its’ way through the muck and mire with Benson’s vocals sounding especially serene throughout.
“Spread” is a gorgeous yet somber anthem that’s sonically the heaviest thing on here and another track that shows off the complexity of Comatose with subject matter focusing on mental health but which easily fits with feelings of isolation during the current pandemic. “Inside” bangs and broods with Benson and Carroll’s guitars sounding particularly prickly alongside a monstrous vocal turn as “Further” cranks it to 11 before settling into a grand groove of heavenly heaviness.
Captivating until the very end, “Sinking” traverses a range of tempos beginning with a slow burn led by Carlson’s phenomenal pummeling and Menz’s baritone fortitude before ending in a hypnotic refrain from Benson with guitars from Benson and Carroll echoing out until the end.
A Way Back arrives through Transcending Records on January 22nd. Pre-orders are up now and can be checked out by heading here or here. For more on Comatose, journey to the information superhighway and the pages of media that are social by clicking here or here.