Yamantaka // Sonic Titan
Uzu


4.0
excellent

Review

by Lani Parker USER (3 Reviews)
October 30th, 2013 | 53 replies


Release Date: 10/29/2013 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Noh, really

Yamantaka // Sonic Titan burst unto the internet buzz machine in 2011 with their debut LP, YT // ST, a sludgy, yet spacious output that draws from as many decades as cultures. For all of the stoner rock moments, there are just as many Japanese gibberish lyrics and distorted samples resembling throat singing. The album’s centerpiece, “Reverse Crystal // Murder of a Spider” opens with an ethereal distorted sample and then takes a hard left turn into a psychedelic rocker that morphs between ideas and influences with reckless abandon.

The band’s new release, Uzu, is significantly more colorful and incorporates a more narrative sense than its predecessor. The opening combination of “Atalanta” and “Whalesong” introduces a rumbling, epic scope that propelled forward by Ruby Kato Attwood’s angelic hymn for the titular character of the former and the instantly catchy main piano riff on the latter. This momentum drives into one of the strongest tracks on the record, “Lamia”, in which Ruby’s vocals sound as if they are ringing throughout a mountainous valley, accompanied by a disembodied stellar choir.

It is with the track, “Wildflower” that the record slows down and reaches its low point, from which it doesn’t recover until the end of the “Seasickness pt2”. This isn’t to say the middle of the record doesn’t have its strong points. “Hall of Mirrors” contains some brilliantly harsh vocal delivery and both parts of “Seasickness” have an enjoyable build up that unfortunately peters out before it hits a climax. However, given the trio it opens with and the trio it ends with, this section leaves something to be desired as nothing hits with the same poignancy.

On “Bring me the Hand of Bloody Benzaiten”, the grand atmosphere of the opening returns with a vengeance. A creepy atmosphere sets in, fueling Taiko drumming that gradually grows louder. “One” hits like a brick to the face and explodes into one of the year’s catchiest sung melodies. The band as a whole are at their strongest here and they created an opus that is dance inducing and stands on its own aesthetically.

As a whole, Uzu is a fantastic follow up to YT // ST that expands their sound further out from the stoner rock influences into more catchy, atmospheric territory. Despite the lackluster midsection, Alaska B’s drumming, which shines on “Seasickness pt2” is as impressive as ever and Attwood’s vocals form a greater piece of the overall picture. The band as a whole incorporates a wider variety of influences into an even more impressive record.


user ratings (26)
Chart.
3.7
great
related reviews

YT//ST

Comments:Add a Comment 
LilLioness
October 29th 2013


2727 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

Wasn't expect this to flirt with track-by-track so much, but I wanted to avoid talking about the by now over reported background of Alaska B and Ruby Kato Attwood.

SeaAnemone
October 29th 2013


20946 Comments


not really

Digging: Viet Cong - Viet Cong

Days of Future Passed
October 29th 2013


475 Comments


Not a bad review, I'm glad you avoided talking about their background. I'd say try and tie all your ideas together (e.g. for this album you could talk more about how this album incorporates a stronger narrative sense than the previous album, then give specific examples of this). Dunno, just my thoughts.

I enjoyed "One" so I should probably hear this.

Digging: BADBADNOTGOOD - III

conesmoke
October 30th 2013


5288 Comments


sounds interesting. ill pos ya

Keyblade
October 30th 2013


15392 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

Hey you reviewed it yay

Digging: Fen - Carrion Skies

ShitsofRain
October 30th 2013


5956 Comments


they delivered another fantastic record

damn

LilLioness
October 30th 2013


2727 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

@Keyblade Yep, it took a while, too.

ShitsofRain
October 30th 2013


5956 Comments


this review reads like a 4.5 to me

LilLioness
October 30th 2013


2727 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

I am still experimenting with my reviews. Quite a few people were put off by how negative my Ulver review seemed so I decided to ease up on the negative criticism on this one. Honestly, I was originally going to give it a 3.5, but the album grew on me more as I was writing this.

ShitsofRain
October 30th 2013


5956 Comments


yeah it's something between 3.5 - 4.5

yt // st still has their best song though

LilLioness
October 30th 2013


2727 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

Out of curiosity, which song is that?

ShitsofRain
October 30th 2013


5956 Comments


A Star Over Pureland of course

better than One

LilLioness
October 30th 2013


2727 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

Damn, I wasn't expecting you to sat my favorite.

EaglesBecomeVultures
October 30th 2013


5273 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

first listen was man first one is better
second listen was aight i fucks with it
third listen was like awwyeah

sweet review and fuck sea he sucks

Digging: Viet Cong - Viet Cong

LilLioness
October 30th 2013


2727 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

Exactly. This one has quite a bit going on that you don't notice the first time around.

EaglesBecomeVultures
November 1st 2013


5273 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

11 VOTES

treeqt.
November 1st 2013


11514 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

hey

Digging: Zhu Xiao-Mei - Scarlatti: Piano Sonatas

Keyblade
November 1st 2013


15392 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

TWELVE

treeqt.
November 1st 2013


11514 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

outrageous

LilLioness
November 1st 2013


2727 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

I am shocked it is only 12. But then, I guess, not everything is appreciated in these parts.



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