Again, preparing to release yet another bravely powerful epic, CORMORANT, the progressively black melodic metal quintet from San Francisco are nothing short this time of unearthly lulling vibrancy with their impending 7 track ferocity called "Dwellings". Two years after their last, and debut, release, these West Coast talents have brought forth a new, uniquely different album than what they have previously delivered. Not in the least is "Dwellings" a step back for them though. Quite on the contrary, the lush atmospheric melodies I have found herein are anything but backtracking for these guys. And nothing is commercial in quality either. Every song, every riff, every note is fresh and invigorating, while introspective at the same time.
With Nick Cohon on guitars, Brennan Kunkel on drums and vocals, Matt Solis on guitars and vocals, and Arthur von Nagel on vocals and bass, the expression of their musicianship is shared throughout the group, and certainly shows. "Junta" is a brilliant, sludgy, but powerfully spoken expression of the band's quality. Poignant and elegant all at the same time, with heavy, deep, syrupy patterns drifting seamlessly into a classical tapestry of mesmerizing meditation, and then dropping you into another expression of finalistic discontent, this is an epic journey of idealism placed magically into song and verse, even blending patterns of black metal, as if effortlessly, before reminding the listener of the original journey.
"Confusion of Tongues" is a pure heavy metal instrumental ballad unlike any other. Although holding the integrity of true metal form, it again shows the deeper development these musicians share together in their ability to take you across time and space, with or without words. "The Purest Land" continues the thriving essence of their stylistic extensions into a further musical form, again weaving their powerfully chosen lyricism with beautifully traversing riffs and musical patterns to form, yet again, another howling jam.
Simply put, CORMORANT are the tellers of tales in this generation of heavy metal, and "Dwellings" is an epic saga in the community of their audience.