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7/10 Avi
 

VON TILL, STEVE - A Life Unto Itself - CD - Neurot Recordings - 2015

A Life Unto Itself is the latest, solo release by Steve Von Till, who is known as a guitarist and vocalist for Neurosis. This is an intimate album featuring music that is typically low-key, and relies on Von Till's bass vocals for emotional impact.

Von Till's backing is kept quite minimal throughout. It is basically acoustic in nature (not to be confused with purely acoustic though!), and the first two songs - "In Your Wings" and the title track (on both you will find Von Till accompanied by pedal steel and viola players) correspond with folk music while their sparsity reservedly adds a dimension of darkness and ache.

The following songs mostly pick up the setting that was already established and elaborate it. On "A Language Of Blood" a more menacing curtain is maintained (with some effect applied to the guitar), with percussion and hurdy gurdy joining the aforementioned instruments. "Night Of The Moon" takes an even more electronic turn, utilizing keyboard instruments - this one sounds like a Mark Lanegan song, and while Von Till does not necessarily benefit from the comparison (as Lanegan's vocal performance, in general, has more impact), the lazy, almost nerve-racking proceeding holds and maintains not only the mood but also the artist's idiosyncrasy.

The same slow pace characterizes the rest of the material, enwrapping the listener gradually. Von Till's voice occasionally cracks, suggesting a Tom Waits reference, but otherwise his slightly monotonic delivery has a mantra-like effect that can be bewitching, depending on how deep you are willing to sink. (7/10)

 

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ISSUE 78
ALBUM REVIEWS

(A-B)  (B-D)  (D-G)  (G-K)  (K-M)  (M-P)  (P-S)  (S-ST)  (S-W)  (W-Z)

SUMIA
Until We Shine

TOR MARROCK
Destroy the Sou

TORCHIA
Ending Beginnin

VEHEMENCE
Forward Without

VHOLDGHAST
Lat Oss Forbrin

VISIT, THE
Through Darknes

VON TILL, STEVE
A Life Unto Its

WAKE THE NATION...
Sign Of Heart

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