The Nocturnes
Aokigahara


4.0
excellent

Review

by neurisis17 USER (20 Reviews)
October 26th, 2013 | 13 replies


Release Date: 2011 | Tracklist

Review Summary: "Life steals out my breath"

This album is named after the forest known as the "Sea of Trees" at the base of Mt. Fuji in Japan. A landmark known worldwide for its demon-rich folklore, unnerving quiet, and an extremely popular place to commit suicide.

The Nocturnes' Aokigahara represents the forest quite well. The vocal harmonies laid down by Emma Ruth Rundle and Paris Patt give the music a haunting presence, right from the first words of the title track. The two voices work in a pleasing tandem, with Rundle going high and Patt keeping everything anchored in the lower register. However, both singers have their respective opportunities to shine on their own, notably "The Cradle" (Rundle) and "The Road" (Patt), and they shine well, Rundle capitalizing on the innocence of her voice, and Patt finding himself quite emotive as well. While the vocals do serve as the focal point for The Nocturnes' sound, the instrumentation creates a very poignant atmosphere. Everything has a very full tone, and when the guitars and bass are layered together, they often create a sense of floating, only being loosely held down by Dave Clifford, who takes a refreshing back-seat approach to percussion (unlike his work in Red Sparowes). These two sides to the band make the album very free-flowing, only rarely being broken up by solid melodies and rhythms (such as the folky guitar of "The Cradle" and "Hello Neighbor", or the driving percussion of "Craving"), almost like wandering through the dense, dark, and mysterious "Sea of Trees".

However, this is an album that pairs sonic darkness with uplifting melodies, giving a slight ray of hope to the depressive picture that Aokigahara creates. This adds a dimension that takes the music to another level, and differentiates The Nocturnes from a slew of simpler shoe-gaze driven bands.

While this album isn't exactly complex, everything is carefully placed and thought out, and produces a very heartfelt result. It is the emotion generated by this album that really sets it apart.



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user ratings (9)
Chart.
3.6
great

Comments:Add a Comment 
menawati
October 25th 2013


16587 Comments


oh cool, i quite liked 'a year of spring' i'll check this out, any stream ?

menawati
October 25th 2013


16587 Comments


ah is free on bandcamp gonnalisten

neurisis17
October 25th 2013


585 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

yeah I got both after I saw they were free



menawati
October 25th 2013


16587 Comments


liking this, sounds more folky than other stuff i heard by them

Underflow
October 26th 2013


4663 Comments


Not sure if I'm pronouncing the album title correctly.

neurisis17
October 26th 2013


585 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

a-oh-key-ga-ha-ra... I'm glad I could be your dictionary for the moment

Underflow
October 26th 2013


4663 Comments


Ah, okay, that's what I thought - thanks! Nice write-up, too.

neurisis17
October 26th 2013


585 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

thanks very much

BallsToTheWall
October 28th 2013


49151 Comments


Good review this sounds up my alley.

Digging: Pohgoh - In Memory of Bab

neurisis17
October 28th 2013


585 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Definitely check it out man^

Lord(e)Po)))ts
September 13th 2015


39900 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Emma Ruth is just such a lovely lady

Dewinged
January 22nd 2017


13113 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Finally jamming this now. Loving it.

Digging: Kaelan Mikla - Not Eftir Not

Dewinged
January 23rd 2017


13113 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

This doesn't hold a candle to her solo stuff or Marriages but still, great stuff.



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