Our Disintegrating Museum

Written by: DR on 17/03/2013 21:34:57

When Io's sophomore album, "Materioptikon", was reviewed by AP back in 2010, the general consensus was that it was a fine post-metal record but ultimately one somewhere behind Rinoa's masterpiece "An Age Among Them". Three years later, Rinoa have broken up, and a challenger is needed to Devil Sold His Soul's seemingly unchallenged claim to the crown of being England's post-metal kings. Io's latest opus, "Our Disintegrating Museum", their third release in total, should see them become that challenger.

While undoubtedly a post-metal record at heart, it stretches beyond the genre's typical landscape. A penchant for the heavy and claustrophobic is apparent and is tightly constructed by the heavy, metallic riffs. But, just as easily as the album starts in metal territory, it transitions across numerous styles and genres. Indeed, Io have more of a taste for light to offset any notions of unrelenting bleakness than many of their post-metal peers, and do so by drawing from bands like Explosions in the Sky and Mono. Moreover, they have an experimental edge to their song-writing and have the ability to change the direction - briefly - midway through a song in a similar way to that of 65daysofstatic.

This is all executed with such authority, even ease, that the record as a whole flow like a river. The amalgamation of styles is flawless throughout, and each constructed with the nous as though they had been playing each different element for their entire musical career. That they could dare open the album up with three nine minute tracks yet do so without surrendering your attention to a testament to their songs' genre-hopping innovation. "The Lost Cosmonaut" opens with heavy soundscapes, but ends up near-angelic with its combination of vocal and guitar melodies. Conversely, "The Cisco Kid" climaxes with a roaring vocal-driven climax admist chugging rhythms. "Vultures of the Arc", perhaps their most inventive song, features twinkly mid-sections and funky bass-rhythms leading to an impressive hardcore-esque vocal section. Closer "Voyage of the Alecton", the most affecting song on the album, wonderfully glides from the heaviness of metal to the sky-gazing qualities of an Explosions in the Sky crescendo.

Certainly, "Our Disintegrating Museum" requires patience. Though it only has six songs, it clocks in at 40 minutes, which may be enough to deter less patient listeners. However, if you stick with it, you'll be rewarded with a work inventive enough to attract fans across multiple genres, and one executed with the quality of a band hitting their stride. It must surely place them as one of the UK's most diverse and exciting upcoming metal acts.


Download: The Lost Cosmonout, Vultures of the Arc, Voyage of the Alecton
For The Fans of: 65daysofstatic, Isis, Rinoa, Devil Sold His Soul, Envy
Listen: Facebook

Release Date 01.01.2013
Grammatical Records

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