Review by Adam M on January 18, 2015.
Voices are a new band that has former members of Akercocke. The dark and foreboding aspect of that band is carried out through a more concept-like progressive experience. Being only mildly familiarized with the slightly twisted nature of the band’s forefathers, I was surprised how adding further progressiveness makes for such a rewarding experience.
The music is surprisingly varied and slightly more thrilling than the similar and also excellent album Contradiction by Schammasch that I reviewed recently. It seems the band is willing to try different types of brooding elements, but also not afraid to bring in some more chaotic guitar riffing from time to time. In fact, I am fond of all the musical elements the band uses to create a dystopic atmosphere, except for a couple. First, the shrieking vocals that make and appearance from time to time are largely out of place. Secondly, there are moments where very little is going on, like the spoken word moments, that pull the listener out of the experience a bit and break up the cohesiveness. The aforementioned variation of the band that pulls the music in surprisingly different directions makes up largely for these small flaws, however. There are many moments that are strange on this disc, but they are thrilling and unique. It also makes the band a legitimate new addition that shares only a few elements with Akercocke. The new avant-garde elements carry this band into their own direction and personality.
In the future I hope Voices further tightens their sound and focuses more on the clean vocal delivery. These vocal deliveries are the most successful in songs like The Ultimate Narcissist and should be explored more in the future. As it stands, London is a versatile and haunting experience that demands to be heard.
Rating: 8.5 out of 10