BOSTON/NE BANDS, Fresh Stream

The Modern Voice — S/T

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Somerville instrumental doom quintet The Modern Voice have been ripping around these parts for quite a few years now, but their eponymous new LP marks their first ever studio-recorded full-length record. It’s long overdue.

On The Modern Voice, gloomy synths and hammer dulcimer ride authoritatively on a crest of heavy, heady guitar/bass/drum pummeling. The songs build and build in tension while offering little in the way of release, which creates a simmering and cinematic atmosphere. In fact, any of the seven tracks on this self-released LP wouldn’t sound out of place as the score for a moody, atmospheric horror film or a particularly intense bit of science fiction.

Some passages, like the opening couple minutes of “Paura,” even bring to mind the progressive and mind-bending work of the almighty GOBLIN. Other moments hint at everything from the space-rock operatics of HAWKWIND to MOGWAI-styled post-rock swells. The hammer dulcimer of course can’t help but occasionally betray its roots as a common element of old-timey folk tunes. The overall emphasis here, however, is on keeping things dark and super heavy. On that front, this album definitely succeeds. With any luck it won’t be several more years before The Modern Voice grace us with their sophomore LP.

THE MODERN VOICE’s self-titled LP is available now via their bandcamp.

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