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Monday, July 11, 2016

Frequency Drift - Last

Whenever I would go for either my morning or afternoon walk’s, I would put on my headphones and would listen to an album in its entirety. But I always make sure to take the headphones off and cross the street. One of the albums I’ve listened to, is this fascinating group from Germany named Frequency Drift. I was completely blown away by not just their sound, but how they were taken the essence of Post-Rock, Doom Metal, Post-Metal and the Progressive sonic sounds into a cinematic format.

It’s almost as I’ve mentioned earlier in some of my reviews on albums as if you can imagine a movie inside your head. Well that’s what Frequency Drift’s music is and the score done by them is spectacular and epic. Formed ten years ago by keyboardist Andreas Hack in their hometown in Bayreuth in which it is a sizable town in northern Bavaria on the Red Main River between the Franconian Jura and the Fichtelgebirge Mountains.

And its best known for its association with the controversial composer, Richard Wagner who lived in Bayreuth from 1872 until his death at the age of 63 on February 13, 1883. But let’s get to the band’s music. Frequency Drift have released six albums going back from 2008. This year, they released their seventh album on the Gentle Art of Music label entitled, Last.

I’m very new to the band’s music and the moment I bought the album from the Laser’s Edge website, I was completely spellbound from the moment I put the CD on until the very end. They reminded me at times, White Willow. Almost as if they were following in the footsteps of Jacob Holm-Lupo’s arranging and composition and knowing that they have got it right. And they have.

Alongside Andreas Hack, the band considers Melanie Mau (Seven Steps to the Green Door) on Lead Vocals, Wolfgang Ostermann on Drums, Martin Schnella on Acoustic/Electric Guitar, Nerissa Schwarz on Electric Harp and Mellotron, and Rainer Wolf on Drums. Now I didn’t know quite sure the moment I decided to listen to their music. I was very hesitant at first, but I’ve calmed myself and played the whole thing and as I’ve mentioned earlier, it is the format of a movie and cinematic beauty.

Let’s take a look at the highlights on here. Melanie’s voice comes in with the line “When will you/understand that I just waited/for you/to get my drops.” The second track, Diary starts with her amazing arrangement as Schnella and Wolfgang create this epic scenario as she hits the lines as they raise the bar when she hits those notes for this climbing melody.

The last 2-minutes feature Schwarz’s mellotron setting this gothic and immense section before Schnella’s symphonic metal-sque guitar styles, goes to the higher mountains that sets a beautiful scenario. Merry features this essence of the Meddle-era of Pink Floyd and White Willow’s Ex-Tenebris. Here, we have at first a gothic Leslie-speaker piano section which I would have love to have heard more on here, but it’s so chilling and raw. It goes from calm and filled with power that will make you feel that something has gone wrong inside the abandoned house.

Last Photo has this electronic background from the synths and the Flute section in the Mellotron, set up the memories of the good days from childhood of playing in the snow. The section has a lively rhythm in 4/4 time signature. Melodies swarm as Melanie brings the sounds in her vocals to the composition.

You can imagine of reliving your memories and never forgetting both the past and the present as it changes with the mysterious synths and organ setting up the last farewells. Martin’s bluesy guitars in the style of David Gilmour, sets a scenario of dealing with death as Melanie gives her calm and haunting vocals in the relaxing turned doom-prog approach that almost made me jump on the closer, Asleep.

It’s the last rite of someone dying in front of our eyes and it gave me chills the moment I was stunned and jaw-dropped on the closing track. It’s almost as if both Pink Floyd and Black Sabbath had worked together with Annie Haslam of Renaissance to create this lushful and heavier darker tone as we see one our relative slip away into darkness and never seeing them again.

For me, this is band I’m worth checking out this year. Frequency Drift’s music has taken my musical level to a complete standstill. This is the band worth exploring if you’re a fan of White Willow. I highly recommend it if you want to get into their music, Last is worth checking out if you are into darker themes and cinematic concepts that will take you inside someone closet that has a huge amount of skeletons that they don’t want you to know. 

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