Rhyton - Rhyton - Albums - Reviews - Soundblab

Rhyton - Rhyton

by Miz DeShannon Rating:9 Release Date:2012-01-23

Without wanting to sound as though hunting for the musical equivalent of Superman: is it prog, is it stoner rock, is it light-doom, psych or shoe-gaze goth? It fits all the categories anyway, it being the new 42 minute five-track long-player from Rhyton. Five tracks, over 40 minutes - fabulous. You know what's coming...

Their lyric-less psychedelia is something the likes of Dead Meadow and Stoned Jesus would be proud of. Described as "sonic libation and waveforms" (good use of 'libation', considering the origin of their name), there are no digital effects and tricks here. This album has been made in the old school way, pure recording mastery, sounds created through a multi-amp studio set-up, intricate recording techniques using dual amped leads with lots of tremolo and distortion. True technological primitivism, and an improvisational method.

First up is 'Stone Coloured' (7:22) with a deep and delicate bass intro, tinny cymbal crashes and monotonous drumming. A typical aimless trickling guitar line with an outpouring of effects and wailings has a slight Hendrix sound to it, and lives up to a jam rock label. This drifts off and into the raw and grimy sounding second track, 'Pontian Grave'. At over 12 minutes long, it's a total jam session; experimental, guitar-led, with a heavy plodding bass, getting more and more trippy towards the end.

Rhyton aren't all about grungy, noisy guitar music though - Well, not 100 per cent of the time. The sounds they have created move to a delicate and even more abstract sound on 'Teké' (10:06) which has a contrasting and super-intense ending, perfectly preceeding 'Dale Odalíski'. Played on a loud system, this would sound very like Sun O))). The shortest track on the album, it's almost five minutes of nothing but trance-like whirring, squealing and pulsing, with a distinct lack of drums, apart from sprinklings of tribal thumps. I guess this is where the technological primitivism comes in. You can just imagine the analogue equipment littered around the studio.

The last track, 'Shank Raids' (7:50), is what you'd put at the more commercial end of Rhyton's music, for those familiar with Wooden Shjips and Wolf People. There's the crackly, bluesy effect of a Les Paul, some jazz drum rolls, and what seems like the same bass line as 'Pontian Grave' but what the hell.

This album reeks of influences from Earthless to Sabbath to Jason Urik, with all sorts of genres thrown in under their 'jam rock' banner. Stonehelm may be too heavy, Moon Duo too electronic, but they're all in here, and if you like any one of that lot, you'll like Rhyton - this is music to get truly absorbed in.

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