SUBROSA  More Constant Than The Gods  2 x LP   (Profound Lore)   35.98

      Back in print on vinyl, issued as a gorgeous double LP with printed inner sleeves and insert.

      More Constant Than The Gods is the gorgeous new album of solemn, metallic-tinged chamber-rock from Salt Lake City's Subrosa, about as perfect a fusion of classical and folk instrumentation and crushing Sleep-esque doom-laden heaviness and soaring, achingly pretty pop hooks as I have ever heard. The album opens with some somber, muted electric guitar and those gorgeous, hushed vocals from singer Rebecca Vernon (who continues to vaguely remind me of Marcy May from Scrawl), the beginning of "The Usher" coalescing from a fog of ghostly violins and scraped strings, gusts of distorted fuzz and the muted chords of the guitar, soon joined by Jason McFarland's equally hushed singing. When the full band crashes in at around the three minute mark, and the sound gives way to a churning metallic might, Vernon's vocals never lose their fragility, even as the band slips into ever slower, heavier tempos and blasts of crushing downtuned heaviness. And from there, More Constant Than The Gods just transforms into something massive, the guitars erupting into squalls of screaming seagull feedback, wailing high-end amp noise rising over those sing-song vocals and weeping violins and churning metallic riffage, the soft chiming of a vibraphone ringing out overhead.

      It's all intense and strikingly beautiful, the songs shifting into folk-flecked dirge and gorgeous multi-part vocal harmonies, where Vernon synches up with her band mates for gorgeous lilting vocal melodies. There's the monstrous lumbering sludge of "Ghosts Of A Dead Empire", which starts off sounding something like the drugged, droning sludge metal before shifting into long stretches of ominous violin that sing over rumbling, fuzz-drenched guitars, leading into the crushing denouement where the song suddenly ascends into a fucking breathtaking hook. Here, Vernon's vocals transform into this achingly beautiful, terminally catchy melody that melts into the droning, saurian riffage perfectly, those violins skittering overhead, turning the final minutes of the song into a stunning piece of folk-flecked sludgepop majesty. "Cosey Mo" features another one of these stunning hooks churning at the heart of the sweeping chamber strings and that grinding guttural guitar tone, while "Fat Of The Ram" slips into an ecstasy of angular heaviness, that Sleepy metallic crush shifting into a strange blur of dissonant slide guitar and haunting clarinet sounds. As the instruments become glazed in delay and are set adrift on waves of echo, the music turns dark and dreamlike as the band bulldozes through the haze, eventually erupting into a kind of progged-out grandeur.

      The album is filled with these amazing moments, from the sorrowful doom of "Affliction" that burns with a mutated, bluesy power, to the dramatic piano that opens closer "No Safe Harbor" and is joined by gorgeous, witchy flutes for another stretch of dark chamber rock mastery, the droning doomed deathmarch that emerges later finds itself fused to an airy folky beauty. Each song weaves an eerie spellbinding story, Vernon's lovely voice the thread tying it all together, with lyrics that are both richly evocative and literate, with considerable footnotes included in the booklet that help to expand their lyrical visions. By far the band's best work to date, the album features Glyn Smyth's beautiful Symbolist/Aubrey Beardsley influenced artwork.

Track Samples:
Sample : SUBROSA-More Constant Than The Gods
Sample : SUBROSA-More Constant Than The Gods
Sample : SUBROSA-More Constant Than The Gods