As a loyal fan of experimental/alternative/progressive/post-metal, I remember being shocked to hear Earthtone9 were coming back after a long-term (almost 11 year) hiatus. They initially did so with the launch of “Inside, Embers Glow…”, a greatest hits album released as a free download back in 2010 along with some live shows. One year after that, a new EP called “For Cause and Consequence” dropped, showing this UK band was really kicking back into gear. This all lead up to their latest record “IV”, which was released on April 8th, 2013.

Whenever I first listened to their 2000 album “arc’tan’gent”, I was immediately caught into their music. They blended a wide range of sounds going from ethereal space to some crude pounding tunes. I ended up listening to their previous releases just to face the band splitting up in 2001. I had a hard time believing it, such a great band disappearing… that is until a few years back.

“IV” welcomes us with “March of the Yeti”, showing the powerful combination of drums, riffs and roaring vocal screams this band is capable of. It will remind listeners of the classic sound of Earthone9’s first records. At the same time, it will leave a sweet & sour sensation of expecting something fresh from the listening experience.

Followed by catchy songs likes “Preacher” and “Sea of Blades”, the first batch of tracks open the gates of this album while preparing listeners for what’s coming next. “Andersion” kicks in with quite a punchy bass line only to create a musical atmosphere alongside the pipes of Karl Middleton’s vocal power.

Both tracks “God Cloud” and “Horizon’s End” are great examples of how post-metal tracks should be done. “Our Last Sunrise”, “The Sound of the Engine Turning” and “Occam’s Razor” are somehow gloomy and vigorous at the same time. The last three in particular serve as proof that this band’s energy and aggression are shown through big crunchy riffs, punchy drums and vocals that will blow your head apart.

If you’re into the idea of a merge between Helmet, Alice in Chains and Tool, this is a must listen. And if you’ve never listened to Earthone9, there can’t be a better prologue into their music. So grab this album and prepare to rock the fuck out!

– Jorge Armando

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