steering clear of the mainstream
since 2001

june 2010

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info opinion


Self-titled CDEP

Noreaster Failed Industries

Genres: experimental rock, instrumental rock, drone rock

2406 Phillips Dr.
Alexandria VA

Jul 26 - Aug 1 2004

Southkill fall under the "epic instrumental rock" banner that is shared by acts like Mogwai, Godspeed You Black Emperor!, and Explosions in the Sky.  They border on drone rock due to meticulous use of spacey reverb layers, although the presence of a strong rhythm section prevents it from becoming too expansive.

Although limited to five compositions, this EP is far from a brief affair.  All but one of its songs are over six minutes in duration, and its longest track clocks in at nearly thirteen minutes.  Due to a limited range of sounds, this makes for a bit of an attention-tester, particularly for those unaccustomed to the genre.  On "Bridges Designed to Collapse," Southkill perfectly exemplifies their formula - seven minutes of chomping, propeller-like guitar-and-rhythm rain down upon the listener.  Think Mogwai without the occasional sensitivity.  The album's lengthy centerfold, the aforementioned thirteen-minute "Horizon at Aramoana," follows a simple but effective formula - start slow, build up to loud, guitar-heavy climax; then do it again twice.  Nothing groundbreaking, but a fine take on the tried and tested concept.

This self-titled EP is nothing I haven't heard before, but it is performed with passion and precision, resulting in a strong release for fans of epic, instrumental rock.  It isn't Young Team, but it's a fine start nonetheless.


Matt Shimmer

[Vitals: 5 tracks, distributed by the label, released 2003]