Caulbearer - Haunts
Noise, Ambient As the music within the Industrial scene has evolved over time, I find myself waiting for a resurgence in true Industrial music. The scene has become saturated with Aggrotech bands that get labeled as being Industrial music, and it seems to have reached a stalemate. It hasn't really changed in years and has become quite stagnant. I find myself searching out other genres within the Industrial scene that reach back to it's roots. I've been exploring the world of Dark Ambient for a few years now, as I feel it's the closest thing we have left to real Industrial music. It's a genre that's filled with hellish soundscapes, beautifully dark soundtracks and foreboding overtones. There are so many sub genres within Dark Ambient to explore and enjoy.

In September of 2012, an album entitled 'Haunts' was released by a new Ambient musical duo who call themselves Caulbearer. They are from the United States (in New Mexico). Being from the States myself, it was very refreshing to hear a native Ambient band that has, what I feel is, the potential to be the spearhead of the start of a resurgence of Industrial music, and one of the best Noise Ambient acts I've heard in a while.

'Haunts' is available as a download of a 10-track album in your choice of formats or as a limited cd, which comes in a 4-panel, full-color digipack, featuring artwork by the band members. The cd is limited to 100 copies and comes in a poly-wrap sleeve with a vinyl Caulbearer sticker. 'Haunts' was mastered by James Plotkin, an American guitarist and producer famous for his role in bands such as Khanate and OLD. He tends to work with Grindcore, Industrial Metal, Noise, and Drone Metal artists, among other genres.

The easiest way to describe this album is that it is Noise Ambient, as it's composed mostly of noisy elements rather than quieter rumbling, abstract soundscapes. So, in essence, it's Noise Ambient and not Ambient Noise (which focuses more on the rolling quiet drones that create a calming atmosphere). Caulbearer's music is downright scary and unnerving. This can be difficult for some people to listen to because if you really listen to it, you hear things that aren't really there and you will get a very unsettling feeling. However, that's the power of music and that's what matters most (to me anyway). That music actually makes you feel something. From the beginning, you are assaulted by many layers of loud machine-ish noises that create a heavy and raw rhythm. The album is basically very loud throughout, but does show it's Ambient roots in some spots. Most of the tracks become much quieter towards the end before becoming enveloped into the next track. This album also has somewhat of a Black Ambient feel to it, because it contains a few elements of the Black Metal/Black Ambient genre, such as guitar soundscapes, so really it does mix a little bit of many styles of Dark Ambient together to create an amazing soundtrack to the worst nightmare you've ever had.

This album's story is split up into four significant sections, where the music will slightly change to fit within a theme. Your journey begins with the section entitled The Absorbing Ghost. The music begins very quiet and progressively get louder, however the multi-layering of the music is already there from the beginning. You feel as if this evil presence is slowly heading your way, and you know that this presence will soon be upon you to assault your ears. Shortly into the first track you are completely absorbed into this entity and there is absolutely no escape. This section features noisy, creepy string instrumentation.The section entitled Siege Machines is appropriately named as it features many metallic and machine noises. This section can be very noisy in parts and may be the most difficult section to get through without getting a headache. The section entitled Shipwrecked Cathedrals is where the album takes a turn and becomes more Ambient in nature. You feel as if you are walking through an abandoned (or what you think is an abandoned) cathedral located in a distant land. Throughout your journey, you'll discover why this cathedral was abandoned. Evil lives here. The section entitled Infinite Rooms of the Afterlife gives you a feeling that you are trapped in Purgatory, forever walking the desolate planes and leaves you with a feeling of tragedy and the inevitability that you will never leave this place. There are no happy endings to this story. Just silence.

The thing I like most about Dark Ambient is that every album tells a story through the use of soundscapes and not words. And that story can be interpreted differently by each listener. I could go into details about what visual and sensory experiences this album gave to me, but what I see and hear may not be what you see and hear. This isn't the type of Dark Ambient album that's full of ritualistic chants and Pagan ambience, like fire crackling and bubbling sounds. It's filled with intense, harsh Industrial and Noise music.

I encourage everyone who has been seeking a good Industrial album or very good Dark Ambient album to check out this band because I am super impressed with this release. As Dr. Weir put it in one of the greatest movies ever made (Event Horizon): "Where we're going, you won't need eyes to see."
5
Brutal Resonance

Caulbearer - Haunts

As the music within the Industrial scene has evolved over time, I find myself waiting for a resurgence in true Industrial music. The scene has become saturated with Aggrotech bands that get labeled as being Industrial music, and it seems to have reached a stalemate. It hasn't really changed in years and has become quite stagnant. I find myself searching out other genres within the Industrial scene that reach back to it's roots. I've been exploring the world of Dark Ambient for a few years now, as I feel it's the closest thing we have left to real Industrial music. It's a genre that's filled with hellish soundscapes, beautifully dark soundtracks and foreboding overtones. There are so many sub genres within Dark Ambient to explore and enjoy.

In September of 2012, an album entitled 'Haunts' was released by a new Ambient musical duo who call themselves Caulbearer. They are from the United States (in New Mexico). Being from the States myself, it was very refreshing to hear a native Ambient band that has, what I feel is, the potential to be the spearhead of the start of a resurgence of Industrial music, and one of the best Noise Ambient acts I've heard in a while.

'Haunts' is available as a download of a 10-track album in your choice of formats or as a limited cd, which comes in a 4-panel, full-color digipack, featuring artwork by the band members. The cd is limited to 100 copies and comes in a poly-wrap sleeve with a vinyl Caulbearer sticker. 'Haunts' was mastered by James Plotkin, an American guitarist and producer famous for his role in bands such as Khanate and OLD. He tends to work with Grindcore, Industrial Metal, Noise, and Drone Metal artists, among other genres.

The easiest way to describe this album is that it is Noise Ambient, as it's composed mostly of noisy elements rather than quieter rumbling, abstract soundscapes. So, in essence, it's Noise Ambient and not Ambient Noise (which focuses more on the rolling quiet drones that create a calming atmosphere). Caulbearer's music is downright scary and unnerving. This can be difficult for some people to listen to because if you really listen to it, you hear things that aren't really there and you will get a very unsettling feeling. However, that's the power of music and that's what matters most (to me anyway). That music actually makes you feel something. From the beginning, you are assaulted by many layers of loud machine-ish noises that create a heavy and raw rhythm. The album is basically very loud throughout, but does show it's Ambient roots in some spots. Most of the tracks become much quieter towards the end before becoming enveloped into the next track. This album also has somewhat of a Black Ambient feel to it, because it contains a few elements of the Black Metal/Black Ambient genre, such as guitar soundscapes, so really it does mix a little bit of many styles of Dark Ambient together to create an amazing soundtrack to the worst nightmare you've ever had.

This album's story is split up into four significant sections, where the music will slightly change to fit within a theme. Your journey begins with the section entitled The Absorbing Ghost. The music begins very quiet and progressively get louder, however the multi-layering of the music is already there from the beginning. You feel as if this evil presence is slowly heading your way, and you know that this presence will soon be upon you to assault your ears. Shortly into the first track you are completely absorbed into this entity and there is absolutely no escape. This section features noisy, creepy string instrumentation.The section entitled Siege Machines is appropriately named as it features many metallic and machine noises. This section can be very noisy in parts and may be the most difficult section to get through without getting a headache. The section entitled Shipwrecked Cathedrals is where the album takes a turn and becomes more Ambient in nature. You feel as if you are walking through an abandoned (or what you think is an abandoned) cathedral located in a distant land. Throughout your journey, you'll discover why this cathedral was abandoned. Evil lives here. The section entitled Infinite Rooms of the Afterlife gives you a feeling that you are trapped in Purgatory, forever walking the desolate planes and leaves you with a feeling of tragedy and the inevitability that you will never leave this place. There are no happy endings to this story. Just silence.

The thing I like most about Dark Ambient is that every album tells a story through the use of soundscapes and not words. And that story can be interpreted differently by each listener. I could go into details about what visual and sensory experiences this album gave to me, but what I see and hear may not be what you see and hear. This isn't the type of Dark Ambient album that's full of ritualistic chants and Pagan ambience, like fire crackling and bubbling sounds. It's filled with intense, harsh Industrial and Noise music.

I encourage everyone who has been seeking a good Industrial album or very good Dark Ambient album to check out this band because I am super impressed with this release. As Dr. Weir put it in one of the greatest movies ever made (Event Horizon): "Where we're going, you won't need eyes to see." Jul 28 2013

Amy OConnor

info@brutalresonance.com
Writer and contributor on Brutal Resonance

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