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An eerie siren sound starts off “Nadua” and the first moments of Creepoid’s eponymous follow-up to their excellent 2011 LP Horse Heaven. What initially sounds like tuneful guitar feedback suddenly reveals itself as a sustained trumpet note, and just as quickly it’s joined by a second one. Sean Miller’s worn but beautiful voice arrives in a similar fashion, comfortably nestling itself within the drone along with his acoustic guitar. This moment of quiet uneasiness is interrupted as the rest of the band swiftly crashes in to remind us of what’s to come. The song ends in a noisy climax, Miller getting hoarse as he tries to fight the volume of the ruckus. Often with Creepoid, moments of peace eventually give rise to moments of destruction. “Sunday” immediately brings us back down from the first of several pointedly chosen loud climaxes permeating Creepoid, as a sublime backdrop of slide guitar and strummed acoustic guitar create a warm atmosphere for Miller’s wistful sighs expressing both the pain and in-the-moment ecstacy of desire and desperation.

Creepoid specialize in the darker side of emotion, and this dark affinity surfaces often as a counterpoint to more blissful moments. “Tired Eyes” starts off angelic enough but around the 1:30 mark the song transforms into a growling, hulking beast trudging towards its inevitable end, the remaining screeching feedback sounding like its death-cry. “Yellow Wallpaper” is a tentative step into uncharted territory for Creepoid, sounding almost ‘dance-y’ in its breakbeat rhythm and emphasis on repetition. It’s a more bouncy spiritual sequel to Horse Heaven‘s mesmerizing “Hollow Doubt”. Bassist Anna Troxel’s vocals operate in a more ethereal and fragile way, complimenting the song’s hazy seduction. Drummer Pat Troxel, as in the mentioned Heaven track, takes vocal duties in “Gout” for a decidedly punkier, Swervedriver-ish song that climaxes in a hammering repetition offset by Anna’s calm croons. They channel the Pixies’ rocking spirit in “Baptism” and “Acrimony,” the latter’s rollicking intro descending into a stoned-out shuffle featuring droney keys and the whine of a distant echo-y guitar. “Vulgar” sounds anything but, highlighting beautiful chiming guitars and wistful vocals. It’s one of the few tracks that offers pure bliss in a way that would give Mazzy Star goosebumps. “Old Tree,” a song they wrote around the time of Heaven, contains a particularly infectious melody that resurfaces throughout the track in various forms. Eventually, the song crashes into a fuzzy wah-wah guitar battle and comes together with that melody shining through the haze.

Theirs is the sound of reveling in the moment. Whatever feeling that bears examination and reverence is thoroughly explored and the results are at times brooding, tranquil, contemplative, blissful, and other times violent, crushing, and downright scary. There are many moments to enjoy, and every nuance is confidently and cleverly arranged. The feeling in the end is not the sadness that is so prominent in the lyrical themes and moods of Creepoid but catharsis and accomplishment.

Creepoid is out on No Idea Records and they’ll be on tour to support it in the coming months, including a stop in Boston (well, Cambridge) on Saturday, March 29th with Bong Wish, Reformer (OH) and Headmaster (OH) at Middlesex Lounge.

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