The Visit
Between Worlds


4.5
superb

Review

by Alex Newton USER (46 Reviews)
January 20th, 2014 | 64 replies


Release Date: 01/08/2014 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Out of the blue, a brilliant display of artistic chemistry and virtuosity.

In an industry where everything seems to be trending towards the more complex – faster, louder, overhyped, overproduced – it takes an act of understated beauty to remind us what makes something truly memorable. The Visit takes this concept and runs with it. Hailing from Ottawa, Canada, The Visit consists solely of singer Heather Sita Black and cellist Raphael Weinroth-Browne, who display stunning chemistry on their debut release, “Between Worlds.” Though containing only a single fourteen-minute song, it is, quite frankly, a tremendous opening statement from the duo. The piece traverses a number of peaks as it builds from a chamber-style lament to a progressive juggernaut and back with breathtaking ease.

In recent years, electric cello has begun to surface as a viable lead instrument in avant-garde music; albums such as Agalloch’s Marrow of the Spirit and The Red Paintings’ Walls come to mind as having featured and benefitted from the haunting playing of Jackie Perez-Gratz and Wayne Jennings, respectively. Here, however, the burden of carrying all instrumental melodic and rhythmic aspects of “Between Worlds” falls squarely on Weinroth-Browne’s shoulders, and his creative arrangements are more than up to the task. Over the course of “Between Worlds,” his playing features double-stop chords, throaty bass picking, mellifluous staccato runs, and indescribable bowed/picked combinations woven together with rare virtuosity. His lyrical playing style allows him to carry the song for minutes at a time, but it’s when his vocalist joins in that “Between Worlds” really takes off.

From what I can tell, the entirety of Black’s singing is in non-lexical vocables – sounds meant to be sung, but which carry no specific meaning. Still, her contralto vocalizations carry a distinctly Arabic feel, partially due to Black’s use of scales containing a major second interval and partially because their timber brings to mind works such as those of renowned Raï singer Cheb Mami. A number of times, she invokes a descending back-beat motif, which serves as both a chorus of sorts and the climax of the song; without lyrics to hold onto, her variance between plaintive mantras and vibrant vibrato lines gives each section of the song new character. Of course, comparables for this sort of music are hard to come by. The band cites a combination of progressive metal, chamber music, world music, and avant-garde styles as their basis, and few artists cover such wide stylistic ground. In the realm of progressive metal, in particular, the violin of Ne Obliviscaris’ Tim Charles might be the best starting point.

Listening to the incendiary rising action between nine and twelve minutes into the song, one has to wonder whether The Visit has even scratched the surface of their potential as they begin to leave footprints in the snow of a path all their own. As “Between Worlds” concludes with ghostly singing and sparse cello notes, seeming as though it has traversed several of those titular worlds and come full-circle to where it began, the future seems both wide open and extremely bright for this young duo. For anyone remotely interested in up-and-coming progressive or neo-classical artists, The Visit is very close to essential listening.



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user ratings (36)
Chart.
3.8
excellent

Comments:Add a Comment 
Pheromone
January 20th 2014


3788 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

I'll be sure to give this a listen right now, nice review

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pedro70512
January 20th 2014


3500 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Thanks, talent.

Album is at thevisit1.bandcamp.com

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TheSlenderMan
January 20th 2014


606 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Artwork screams Skyrim so listening right now. Good work.

pedro70512
January 20th 2014


3500 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Well, my news article on this was deleted for some unknown reason. Really, mods?

TheSlenderMan
January 20th 2014


606 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

I don't know why. This needs to be heard though. Good song.

Pheromone
January 21st 2014


3788 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Really beautiful song!

pedro70512
January 22nd 2014


3500 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Yeah, I was expecting it to be all over the place considering the influences but their sound is very cohesive and original. Can't wait to hear more.

Mad.
January 22nd 2014


4070 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Very nice review, you should request a feature

pedro70512
January 22nd 2014


3500 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

thank you. I'd love to but my profile doesn't
work on the message boards. my email went
defunct and that screwed it up -- also why i
don't have an avatar...

Mad.
January 23rd 2014


4070 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Ah don't worry, I submitted it for ya
Good luck!

ShitsofRain
January 23rd 2014


5948 Comments


what is this?

Pheromone
January 23rd 2014


3788 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

An album

ShitsofRain
January 23rd 2014


5948 Comments


metal?

zakalwe
January 23rd 2014


8879 Comments


"In an industry where everything seems to be trending towards the more complex – faster, louder, overhyped, overproduced"

This has been going on for the last 15yrs dude.
This album seems promising, will give it a go.

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protonjon
January 23rd 2014


90 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

This has got to be a movie soundtrack.

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pedro70512
January 23rd 2014


3500 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

"metal?"

it has the dynamic complexity to be metal but no, not really. if you like progressive metal then you will probably enjoy it though.

ProjectFreak
January 23rd 2014


1438 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

this sounds awesome, listening now. review is great.

edit: confirmed, this is great.

Acanthus
January 23rd 2014


9545 Comments


Pretty great track, enjoy the price point too.

Digging: MO - No Mythologies To Follow

MO
January 23rd 2014


18999 Comments


fuck yes the cellist Raph is a buddy of mine and drummer in local Ottawa band Argus Panoptes

this release is sick

heyadam
January 23rd 2014


1718 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

checking this out right now. This sounds amazing!

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