Wednesday, August 14, 2013

True Widow: Circumambulation (2013)


True Widow isn’t really a metal band, strictly speaking. But Circumambulation was released on Relapse, so you can be sure that it’s worth checking out anyway. In particular, it should draw the attention of fans of Kylesa’s recent output.

“Syrupy” is an adjective I’ve seen used to describe the band’s sound, and I find it to be apt. This record is full of shoegaze-y, laid-back stoner rock submerged in tree blood. That’s quite the pleasant vibe to follow for the course of an album, but it gets even better than that.

With few exceptions, I don’t really associate stoner rock with great songwriting. There’s a vibe, a sound, a riff, and that’s usually good enough. I don’t know shoegaze all that well, but I don’t think of it as being particularly about the song either. Nonetheless, True Widow have honest-to-God hooks in each of these songs, sung by either the male or female vocalist. I find myself humming “Four Teeth” out of the blue. I might have expected to hear a trick like that from Boris, but only from Boris.

I can’t tell whether I’m getting a serious case of the critic’s disease—preferring something I’ve never heard before regardless of quality—or if there are just a lot of ridiculously good peripheral-to-metal releases this year. In either case, Circumambulation is one of the finest records I've heard in 2013.

The Verdict: 5 out of 5 stars


  1. This is pleasant enough, though I'm surprised to hear something so hipster sounding get such a good review from you.

  2. There were two strongly shoegaze-influenced albums in the last week that have gotten excellent reviews from me, but they both sound pretty genuine. I think the main thing I have against the more Indie rock-oriented kinds of music is the vocal style, and this one sounds different.

  3. Also, this sounds like the best possible version of Boris. There aren't many higher compliments than that.