Kayo Dot - Official Website


United States Country of Origin: United States

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Buy on: Bandcamp
Type: Full-Length
Release Date: September 6th, 2019
Genre: Ambient, Avant-Garde, Experimental
2. The Something Opal
3. Lost Souls On Lonesome's Way
4. Vanishing Act In Blinding Gray
5. Turbine, Hook, And Haul
6. Midnight Mystic Rise And Fall
7. An Eye For A Lie
8. Blasphemy: A Prophecy

Review by adhlactha on April 22, 2020.

Kayo Dot is one of the bands, who are not scared to experiment and evolve their music. Blasphemy is not the first record with changing mood and atmosphere, but it is very firm and confident continuation of their last two albums. There is something in their sound, which is ethereal and cathartic, and it is not related to the music itself, it’s this special aura of dark mysteriousness and aesthetics. Maybe it’s a bit heavier and darker, than the previous one, but still it’s not common metal record, which you can easily sort out. And that’s an advantage, because Kayo Dot are too perfect in their abstract experiments and style morphing to categorize them in labels.

The vocal range on the record is more complex and emotional, so sometimes you feel an illusion, like you are listening to an audio book, but in a musical form, because the voice is very important here, like any other instrument. There are no schemes in songs structures, every song has unique mood and construction, so the album is not the big repetitive of one song divided in parts. Melancholic guitar solos and synthetic passages, there is plenty of them, and in every song you will find out some moment of culmination, where the emotions are bursting out in almost creepy aesthetic way (like in 'Ocean Cumulonimbus' or 'Vanishing Act In Blinding Gray'). The songs are complete, so there is no chaos in your mind after listening, everything is in perfect harmony. There is also a strange feeling emanating from this album, like you are lost in time and society, when you are entirely diving in it, but this kind of detached loneliness is like medicine, not a curse. There are melodic and open parts in contrast with avant-garde uniqueness, but Blasphemy is not overloaded with progressive craziness or avant-garde elements for the sake of avant-garde. But still it’s emotional and scenic, that’s why Kayo Dot are not so famous, like they deserve, this music is for smart and ever searching minds.

Of course, like in Jason Byron’s lyrics there are some bloody and emotional moments, which create this dark despair, but you are not completely drifting in it, because the progressiveness and complicated architectural structures of songs hold you in trancelike agitation during the entire album. And in the end it’s not something dirty like sludge poisoning your mind after listening, no, on the contrary, you feel relaxed and content, this musical journey is not exhausting you, it fills you with some kind of acceptance of all. It’s even called Blasphemy, but blasphemy in modern world is only a protest for all old school and obsolete. I can’t say that this record is mainstream, obviously it’s not so hard to listen in a musical sense, but it demands all attention to comprehend all the depths of creative promise of Toby Driver’s genius conceptual music, which we all can surely call ART.

Rating: 9.9 out of 10