Sunn O)))
White2


3.5
great

Review

by Patrick Armstrong USER (13 Reviews)
June 1st, 2015 | 10 replies


Release Date: 2004 | Tracklist

Review Summary: One of the most challenging works in Sunn O)))’s discography, but certainly a worthwhile listen for fans, and one that should not be overlooked.

White2 is the fourth album by drone metal band Sunn O))), released by Southern Lord Records in 2004. Much like its 2003 predecessor (appropriately titled White1), White2 finds itself both temporally and musically situated between the straight-up Earth-worshipping drone of their early records and the more experimental, atmospheric work of their later records. The album contains elements of drone doom, dark ambient, noise music, and avant-garde music, and its three tracks are notably distinct from one another, showing three very different sides of the band’s sound. This results in an admittedly uneven listening experience; however, each track has something unique and interesting to offer, and it is from this quality that the album draws its strength.

The first track, “HELL-O)))-WEEN”, is a relatively conventional Sunn O))) composition, if such a thing exists. It most closely resembles the straightforward drone metal of Flight of the Behemoth, with a slow, repetitive, insistent guitar riff gradually flat-lining into a single note for several minutes before the song ends. It is as hypnotic and heavy as music in this genre ever is. Fans of Earth 2, The Grimmrobe Demos, or either of Sunn O)))’s first two full-lengths will undoubtedly enjoy this track, and it makes up what is probably the most accessible section of the album.

The second track, “bassAliens”, is hardly a metal track at all. It features creepy keyboards, found sounds, dissonant guitar improvisations, and a terrifying, loud bass sound that becomes more and more intense and dissonant as the piece continues. It at times resembles the harsh breakcore of electronic artists Aphex Twin and Venetian Snares, though the focus is primarily on ambience and contrast. It may prove challenging for even some Sunn O))) fans, but its atmospheric effect, once embraced, is stunning.

Closing track “Decay2 [Nihils’ Maw]” is by far the most abstract and challenging piece on the album. It features droning guitars and synthesizers; various found sounds, including banshee-like shrieks; and low, guttural growls and chanting by Mayhem’s Attila Csihar (the vocalist primarily used by Sunn O))) in live concerts). This track is the closest the album comes to a pure dark ambient piece; it is easily the creepiest track on here, and also the least typical in terms of the band’s traditional style.

White2 is not necessarily the best or most cohesive work in Sunn O)))’s discography. Albums such as Flight of the Behemoth, Black One and Monoliths and Dimensions are all far better collections of work when listened to as whole experiences. This is due to the fact that the White2’s three tracks are so drastically different from one another, despite the undeniable quality of each one individually. Because of this unevenness, White2 is not necessarily the best starting point for newcomers; however, for fans of drone metal, dark ambient or Sunn O)))’s other works, this album is definitely a rewarding experience that is not to be missed.



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user ratings (155)
Chart.
3.5
great

Comments:Add a Comment 
Ocean of Noise
June 1st 2015


3030 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Figured this one needed a review. It's definitely an overlooked album in their discog.



Constructive comments welcomed and appreciated

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bnelso55
June 1st 2015


630 Comments


Yeah. This did need a review. Well done. Pos'd.
When I'm in the right mood, these guys are great.

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Ocean of Noise
June 1st 2015


3030 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Thanks. These guys rule for me pretty much anytime ahaha. I love this type of music though

Tunaboy45
June 1st 2015


8103 Comments


Surprised this didn't have a review already, have a pos.

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Ocean of Noise
June 1st 2015


3030 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Yay thank you! And yeah, it's weird that no one reviewed this before now...

rockandmetaljunkie
June 1st 2015


5168 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

This is probably their best work.

SCREAM!
June 1st 2015


11383 Comments


No way Monoliths and Black One are easily 1 and 2 (or 2 and 1 not sure)

deathschool
June 1st 2015


17887 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Monoliths is their bestest. I also think this is more accessible than the two that followed it.

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BMDrummer
June 1st 2015


12985 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

love me some drone

Ocean of Noise
June 1st 2015


3030 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Black One > Monoliths > FotB > This > White1 > Void imo



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