This record is scary, man
Those words uttered by Sam Potrykus, co-founder of Boston Hassle, led all of us gathered at the basement of Democracy Center into the listening party for Kannon – latest magnum opus from Sunn O))) out now on Southern Lord.
It wasn’t an officially scheduled listening party either, but the combination of environment, the record and our neverending collective love for the occult provided plenty of food for thought. Namely:
– Track 1 sounds euphoric (if not downright victorious) and strangely calming. Now its hard to say who or what ends up being defeated in this case, as drone-doom rarely identifies its enemies, but it surely is a very different vibe and mood from the bands earlier output. Compare and contrast
– Axl Rose was right when he sang”nothing lasts forever, even cold November rain”. Neither does the somewhat upbeat mood from the first track – its successors are about as cold and dark as it gets and neither seem to be in the mood for any apologies for being that dark.
– Overall, Kannon is the kind of record whose interpretation very much depends on the environment, so pick it with great care (large cavernous halls and dark basements are very much recommended for the occasion and black robes are optional).
– At 30 minutes of duration the record seems to be too short (and it ends without much of a specific conclusion), so best put all 3 tracks on endless repeat and make an infinite loop
Kannon clearly isn’t for everyone – the band clearly isn’t interested in pandering to mass tastes, but if you know a bit of Sunn O))) history (as well as the history of doom-drone genre) and don’t mind being creeped out, then this one comes highly recommended.
I would also crown Jodis debut Secret House as a spiritual twin of Kannon – as it explores the similar territory somewhere between calmness of meditation and aching tension. Secret House also comes highly recommended to anyone into all things drone/ambient/doom: