the curious case of.. neurosis?

August 10, 2011

Neurosis seems to be one of the inventors of sludge metal. Or popularizers?.. I don’t know. Regardless, they are prominent for having brought some thing new. I thought I’d check them out, since after Voyager and Monolith’s Split EP I was really interested in checking out sludge.

I’ve heard Given to the Rising, and gone back in their catalog to their 1996 album right now (Through Silver in Blood). Though I’ve heard them lightly, they are interesting, no doubt about it. But its their sound that’s really ticking me off. I mean, I get it, the dry garage sound is cool on its own, it works for Given to the Rising. But… it also wears you out over time. You get tired of those dry snare hits and that mid-dy, almost muddy sound of guitars. Steve Albini ‘engineered’ their last couple of albums, and they all… sound. the. same. Damnit.

Through Silver in Blood has some traces of focused production though. I mean, I’m enjoying the drums at least, even if the guitars are the same. Or maybe its because I’m just on the first song right now, so…

I don’t get why Steve Albini is so cult-like popular. The only other album engineered by him that I’ve heard are Chevelle’s Point #1 and his very own Shellac albums. Same sound. Granted, Point #1 was my very first appreciated-experience of the sound, and it’s a really good rock n’ roll-ish hard rock album. Excellent Italian Greyhound by Shellac, although similar in sound, seems to have a very unusual clearness to it, so its okay. But in Neurosis he seems to have totally killed things off. They kept coming back to him for making new albums, and he kept giving back the same thing.

What the hell. And I was so looking forward to enjoying Neurosis. Albini just ruined most of it.

Or is this a vinyl thing that you just cannot come to appreciate in digital sound? Damnit.


10 Responses to “the curious case of.. neurosis?”

  1. Taimur Says:

    I would recommend ‘The Eye of Every Storm’ and the ‘Sun that Never Sets’ btw, even though Through Silver in Blood is the most critically acclaimed. I have a feeling I wouldn’t have liked Neurosis that much if I didn’t listen to the eye album first.
    I sort of like the dry snares and fudgy guitars, it gives that feeling of erosion, haziness and the snare whips like a slap that adds to the dryness. But we all have our tastes in the end.
    You have to keep in mind it has been a while since Neurosis released those albums, and haven’t explored like Jakob, Cult of Luna and Isis co., so it wouldn’t be the surprise or new sound that it was back then I guess. It’s still good, but I doubt if it will click with the increasing sound palettes now.

    • Anonymous Says:

      I can get the feeling of haziness and erosion, but for me it takes away from the experience with time because in the end I like my music to sound “clear”. Sparingly I can dig into their produced-sound but four albums in a row with the same sound… come on.

      For me, Given to the Rising seemed to be the clincher at first. The opening, title track was great and I was looking forward to the rest. But they lost me, some how, some way. Then only in the end with “Origin” did they really blow me away. Still an amazing track.

      All excited after Origin, I thought I’d given their other albums a try, but was disappointed. Don’t even feel motivated enough now to give them a proper listen. I’m just hoping they grow on me with time because I really wanted to like them.

  2. Taimur Says:

    How about this?

  3. Taimur Says:

    ah, I guess its not meant to be then :P

    • Anonymous Says:

      I came across some earphones, by chance, that had a good high frequency response. No I am enjoying these guys a bit, particularly the snares and hats. Before, I had bassy or middy headphones that were enjoyable for other music but not for this one.

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