Show Me A Dinosaur
Show Me A Dinosaur


4.5
superb

Review

by Dean M. CONTRIBUTOR (30 Reviews)
December 11th, 2016 | 36 replies


Release Date: 2016 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Post-black metal steps out from under Deafheaven’s pink-and-orange shadow.

Metal has spent the last few years splintering into ever-smaller sub-sub-subgenres to satiate an audience that craves variety and innovation, and we seem to be reaching the point where each genre needs to begin justifying its existence, or else fade into obscurity. Post-black metal leapt ahead in this race for relevance with its breakout record, Deafheaven’s Sunbather. With its gorgeous and innovative use of black metal, post-rock, and shoegaze elements, Sunbather rocketed to the forefront of the metal and indie music scenes, and its surprisingly wide appeal earned Deafheaven a substantial and lasting fanbase. However, post-black metal has done little to evolve since 2013. Most PBM acts that have emerged in the past few years were intent on aping Deafheaven’s signature sound, and while the results ranged from mediocre (Ghost Bath) to beautiful (Numenorean), they seldom innovated. Even when a PBM act like Bosse-de-Nage seemed intent on breaking away from Deafheaven, Deafheaven still came up as a point of comparison in reviews and discussions. Thus, the album that revolutionized post-black metal has now set the main criterion for its legitimacy: Post-black metal needs to prove that it’s made up of more than Deafheaven and their analogs.

With that in mind, it’s time to discuss a post-black metal record that has nothing to do with Deafheaven: the self-titled sophomore album from Russian group Show Me a Dinosaur. The elements that Show Me a Dinosaur use to craft their sound are familiar, yet surprising. Opener “Rakev” begins with a crashing wave of black metal blast beats, then drops to a soft crawl and builds to a hurricane of frantic drums and anxious guitar chords reminiscent of Wake/Lift. “Vjuga” follows a similar trajectory, transforming black metal elements into an even more apparent Rosetta homage, and the combination of influences crystallizes into Show Me a Dinosaur’s prevailing emotional tone: unease. Whereas the most common note for post-black metal acts to strike is one of explicit catharsis, channeling a release of emotions through a pummeling cacophony until it comes out the other end as relief and hope, Show Me a Dinosaur build a subtler sense of unrest that ranges from a slight disquiet to downright dread. The album calms down considerably for post-rock dreamscapes “Lights” and “Gone,” and the nervous tone ostensibly fades from view. But it’s still there, in the back of the listener’s head, threatening to reawaken at any moment and interrupt the dream. That anxiety reemerges with a vengeance in closing track “Wojna,” a tense yet deliberate ten-minute build to a frantic climax teeming with desperation.

Show Me a Dinosaur stands out as a novel approach to post-black metal that combines the subgenre’s typical parts to create a unique whole with a distinct, memorable, affective tone. It stands alongside Astronoid’s Air and Alcest’s Kodama as proof that, in 2016, PBM is finally stepping out from under Deafheaven’s pink-and-orange shadow. Only time will tell whether these albums receive the attention they deserve and cement the legacy of PBM as a legitimate genre. But Show Me a Dinosaur has certainly helped unveil the genre’s potential.




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user ratings (67)
3.6
great

Comments:Add a Comment 
hesperus
Contributing Reviewer
December 11th 2016


1170 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Stream the album at their Bandcamp page: https://showmeadinosaur.bandcamp.com/album/show-me-a-dinosaur



Trying to get a couple reviews for 2016 releases in before the end of the year.

FearThyEvil
December 11th 2016


17280 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

album just kind of brings the snooze

Digging: Skeletal - Bitterness and Burning Hatred

Calc
Contributing Reviewer
December 11th 2016


16627 Comments


despite all these descriptors this sounded no different than every other deafheaven clone I've come across. Gave it a whirl though.

Digging: Lianne La Havas - Lianne La Havas

Sabrutin
December 11th 2016


6883 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

A bit too much Deafheaven talk in my opinion. Sunbather was hardly innovative, it kinda triggers me when it's given so much praise as if it invented blackgaze or something.



Good album, Gone is my fave cut. Deserved a review, pos'd

teamster
December 11th 2016


5035 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

The Rosetta influences in this band are very apparent and noteworthy. I love this release and might be my "metalgaze" album of the year. Excellent review and thanks.

Digging: Sleestak - Aeon

MarsKid
Contributing Reviewer
December 11th 2016


11329 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Ay, this finally got a review. Sweet.

Digging: TRVSS - New Distances

SteveOffProbation
December 11th 2016


1445 Comments


forgot about this

gonna agree about too much deafheaven talk, and i'd recommend you dont repeat the summary in the review, but still a good enough review

hesperus
Contributing Reviewer
December 11th 2016


1170 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Lol I was kinda worried the Deafheaven talk would be a turn-off for some people. But I stand by my argument. I think Sunbather was huge for a reason, and I definitely think it's been the most common reference point that bands and critics alike have used to create and discuss PBM.

climactic
December 11th 2016


22517 Comments


i couldnt get through the first song when i tried to listen

MarsKid
Contributing Reviewer
December 11th 2016


11329 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

First song is great

brainmelter
December 11th 2016


7110 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

nice this needed a rev

Atari
Staff Reviewer
December 12th 2016


25905 Comments


This didn't really grab me when I gave it a go a few months ago, but I generally enjoy your reviews/taste so I'll give it another shot

Digging: Hyperdontia - Nexus of Teeth

Hawks
December 12th 2016


73852 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Love this album.

Digging: Havukruunu - Uinuos Symein Sota

Astral Abortis
December 12th 2016


6746 Comments


This was a whole lot of not good

MarsKid
Contributing Reviewer
December 12th 2016


11329 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Nah

Pajolero
December 12th 2016


1101 Comments


Post-metal is not usually my go-to genre, but these dudes play like every month here, and they're actually pretty good live.

DinosaurJones
December 12th 2016


10289 Comments


Who called?

Gyromania
December 12th 2016


30288 Comments


Post-pre-post black avant garde bluegrass screamo

MarsKid
Contributing Reviewer
December 13th 2016


11329 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Buncha fuckers playing untrue metal

Dinosaur
December 27th 2016


1368 Comments


don't care for post-black noodling. i tolerate Sunbather. I don't remember liking this. might revisit for reptiles.



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