Review Summary: A dark, twisted, yet focussed trip through the minds of its creators, Korova is as much a statement as it is a musical expedition.Korova
is the second full length release from experimental duo Ink Siblings, comprised of Alfie Killick and Connor Kelly, and is the follow up to 2013’s promising debut, Offal
is a much more focussed and confident work than its predecessor which in comparison, whilst displaying a great level of creativity, sounded more like a collection of songs and musical ideas than a cohesive whole. The level of focus shown on Korova
extends to its lyrical themes, which are presented in the form a fully realised concept tackling the topics of patriarchy and misogyny. Songs like Manifesto, a song distinctly written from a misogynist’s point a view, tackle these themes head on, showing a certain directness that is one of Korova
’s greatest strengths.
There is a sense of urgency about Korova
, something which perhaps reflects Killick’s approach to the album’s concept and the thinking behind his social commentary. Musically the album is far from an easy listen with the relentless intensity of Fetishized Motherhood being particularly unsettling but it is in these moments that Ink Siblings demonstrate their ability to challenge the listener, a feat which ultimately makes this album all the more rewarding. During the album’s heaviest, most aggressive moments Connor Kelly’s percussion becomes particularly crucial in keeping the whole thing firmly tied down, which illustrates the duo’s understanding of when to keep things necessarily simple. The instrumentation, whilst on occasion bordering on the free form, is often tightly structured allowing the songs themselves not to be overtaken by instrumental noodling, not that at any point does the album feel in danger of falling into this trap, with Killick’s guitar work in particular displaying an appropriate level of restraint.
is a trip, not so much in an otherworldly, psychedelic way but rather in a much more real
, expeditionary sense. This is conveyed musically as well as lyrically, a point which is exemplified by the album’s instrumental bookends which represent the dynamic shifts in mood that develop throughout the album’s duration. Drifting between alt rock, experimental rock and even elements of trip hop, Korova
is stylistically hard to pinpoint, much like the majority of releases from the Bone Marrow Music Collective, but Ink Siblings manage to combine these varying styles into a decidedly cohesive album. Furthermore, Korova
also manages to combine the directness and aggression of punk with the kind of thought provoking conceptual ideas that are more often present in music of a more complex, experimental nature; the kind of music that Korova
is more closely related to instrumentally.
Whereas previous album Offal
had shown promise, Korova
is the sound of a band delivering on that promise whilst at the same time suggesting that there is still more potential to be reached. If Ink Silblings continue to develop in the way they have so far, their next release will certainly be one to look out for.