REVIEW: PSOTY – “Sunless”
One of the things that progressive rock and metal have seen a glut of over the past decade is instrumental prog/post-rock/metal bands. They seem to be everywhere, and all trying to make their music more sprawling, or more emotional, heavier, jazzier than the next band. Into this fray of bands vying for the same audience steps PSOTY (formerly known as Pet Slimmers of the Year) a four-piece from the UK. Their new album ‘Sunless’ is due in mid-September, and while perhaps not breaking any new ground, is still an enjoyable enough listen.
The album starts off with “Oil Blood” which is also the first single released and is also one of four songs that include vocals. As expected the music is quiet at first before slowly growing in volume, and the vocals begin. For a band that is not focused on vocals, I was pleasantly surprised that they did a rather good job with them, both softer, and moving on into some screams, they worked very well. The band consists of Gowan, Vinten, McKenna, and Lawson, but neither their FB page nor Bandcamp gives any details about who plays what.
The album proceeds in the manner one would expect, the songs are mostly mid-ranged; around the 8-minute mark, though a few are noticeably shorter, although “Watcher of the Abyss” is just over 10 minutes. It happens to be another song that includes vocals, and has some of the heaviest, and most memorable riffs on the album, and is probably my favorite piece. The album closes with “King of Ephyra,” and “Obscura” and they wrap the album up nicely with some of the stronger melodies, and more crushing riffs.
‘Sunless’ is a perfectly pleasant, often quite heavy example of progressive/post-metal. PSOTY clearly know their genre, and audience well, so the album is everything you would expect one of this genre to be. The vocals on half the songs added an additional dimension, that worked quite effectively. But while listening through the album is a nice enough way to spend 50 minutes, there’s nothing here that anyone who’s spent any time listening to the different forms of prog rock/metal over the past 50 years hasn’t heard many times before.