Review Summary: An ocean of fuzz drenched drone…
Boris really celebrated their 30th anniversary this year, the gift that keeps on giving. First, the icy, electronic-meets-drone dirges of W
and then the heavily contrasting third installment in the Heavy Rocks
series. That one contained some of the most manic songs from the three and now, out of nowhere came fade
. Based on the long, doom droning epics of albums such as Amplifier Worship
or more recently, Love & Evol
, the Japanese trio really catered to their fans. fade
is an ample sonic odyssey with a post-apocalyptic vibe attached to it. The abundant fuzz-drenched guitars and feedback layers are overflowing right from the start, as opener “prologue sansaro” unfolds a dense atmosphere with a shoegaze touch throughout its 15-minute span. I have to say it is one of the tastiest cuts of this type in their discography. The process continues on “chapter 1: howling moon, melting sun” with scorching muddy riffs and echoing synths beneath them. The tension becomes draining yet satisfying as it slowly engulfs you.
Halfway through, there’s some sort of respite due to the shorter tunes. “chapter 2: michikusa” boasts haunting noises over trudging guitar chords and what seems to be Wata gently singing in the background. The nightmarish results are compelling and seep through to the next number with some radio station changing static, before droning aggressively returns alongside violent drum pounding on “chapter 3”. It might become exhausting at some point, especially for those not accustomed to Boris’ forays into this kind of music. Despite minimal structures and vocal inclusions on these tracks, there is enough movement during each segment to at least catch your attention or keep you mesmerized. Reaching the final moment on fade, I was curious to hear the last chapter, a different version of “a bao a qu”, called “infinite corridor”. The song has received multiple variants since 2004 and this one eschews the rather conventional approach on Mabuta No Ura
in favor of murky riffs. It gets closer to the original on The Thing That Solomon Overlooked
, still it shares a more discernible albeit just as punitive approach. With fade
, Boris make it easy for us to sit through an hour-long, mostly doom drone record. Having mastered the technique over the years, they smoothly create a thick sonic bubble for you to immerse yourself into.