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alexander tucker - Furrowed Brow
Now available on cd. Doom metal and folk music, they're hardly the two most obvious bedfellows, but Andrew Tucker has somehow combined the two without even batting an eyelid. It's odd because when you hear the two sounds placed together in the right context it seems to make perfect sense, and considering Tucker's work with the omnipresent Stephen O'Malley in Ginnungagap it's hardly surprising that his more recent compositions would take this gloom-ridden route. Beginning with 'You Are Many' we can hear instantly the characteristic folk acoustic work that Tucker made his own on last year's 'Old Fog' yet as the song draws to a close the cacophony of instruments builds to an ear shattering climax with the assistance of that all important distorted guitar. The second track 'Superherder' takes this theme even further, pushing the acoustic instrumentation into the background to make way for bowel churning bass drones which weave harmonically with the guitar and violin melodies. It's an unusual combination which pays off incredibly well, bearing a resemblance in many ways to Xela's recent album 'The Dead Sea' admittedly without the macabre undertones. Throughout the rest of the album Tucker lets his doom and gloom take over, with the album's title becoming never more obvious than on the gothic 'Spout of Light' or the melancholy 'Saddest Summer'. Thankfully though we are never pushed down the self indulgent route, this isn't emo after all, there's no long greasy centre-partings and tight sweaters here, rather Tucker seems to lavish his recordings with an ironic humour and Tom Waits style swagger which gives them an unflinching credibility. Ending on the 10 minute drone-fest of 'Pannemaker Doms' we close the thick velvet curtains on a bold statement of a record and Alexander Tucker's finest collection of work so far. Misery is rarely quite this appealing.