Echoes: The Pursuit

Post-metallers search for their own voice

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The problem with being labelled post-metal over a decade on from the likes of Isis and Cult Of Luna is that you face an enormous challenge to keep pushing the sonic envelope. Sometimes it’s not possible.

It’d be a lie to say that Echoes are the sound of the genre’s re-invention but they do at least borrow from a few off-piste elements on this highly engrossing album. There’s the occasional metalcore-ish gang vocal that won’t shock but might make you raise an impressed eyebrow.

Of course, despite a well-meaning attempt at finding their own voice, all the usual staples are here. Slow-burning, shimmering walls of guitar noise come crashing down as quickly as they were built methodically and drums sound as if they are vibrating at the Earth’s core.

It’s been done before, in superior guises, but it fails to dampen Echoes’ emotional impact and, if they carry on refusing to stick rigidly to an established formula, there could be something quite wonderful coming in the future.

Stephen Hill

Since blagging his way onto the Hammer team a decade ago, Stephen has written countless features and reviews for the magazine, usually specialising in punk, hardcore and 90s metal, and still holds out the faint hope of one day getting his beloved U2 into the pages of the mag. He also regularly spouts his opinions on the Metal Hammer Podcast.