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 Post subject: Yob - Atma
PostPosted: Sat Aug 06, 2011 10:10 am 

Joined: Mon Dec 06, 2010 10:48 am
Posts: 1637


Yob – Atma

Reviewed By Nyx Nightshade

Not sure how many doom fans are familiar with the Indian concept of Atman, but chances are if you’ve hung in psychedelic or consciousness expanding circles long enough, you’ve come across the term, or you’ve even experienced what the word describes. It’s an old word for the higher self, the revealed, true self, the soul that can reveal higher truths to a person through self examination. We rabbits believe in Atman, that the divine light of Frith, our sun god and first born of rabbits, is alive in every being, rabbit, human, cat, gold fish, and can be cultivated and then utilized as a vehicle for self discovery.

Yob have chosen to name their latest album Atma, and it’s an excellent choice of name, as the album represents a culmination of everything the band have done up until this point in their career. The album is a clear retrospective through the various paths that Yob have tread over the years; yet through this process of revisiting and re-examining their roots and their past albums, a unique synthesis has arisen, a building of new ideas as they spiral and soar with the old ones.

Profound Lore has released the sixth album by the Northwest’s extreme doom phenomena, Yob, and it’s as great of a release as any other in their catalog. So far, it’s one of my favourites of 2011. Atma focuses on one of the band’s great strengths: their ability to experiment so effectively with melody and texture, while working within the framework of traditional riff and melodic structures. These songs are just loaded with well constructed, moving, grooving riffs that take on a life of their own within the universe of each song.

The production is crisp, thick, and very raw, focusing on the more in-your-face approach of 2009′s The Great Cessation. Atma is a totally different beast in terms of songs, however. Although opener “Prepare The Ground” would sound at home on any of the last three Yob albums, the galloping riffs of the title track differentiate it from anything Yob has unleashed thus far onto our ears. The dynamic climax, intensive usage of samples, and riff-heavy ending make this track one of my favourite Yob experiences thus far.

The bar is set high, but the other three songs manage to live up. “Before We Dreamed Of Two” is as fine a psychedelic metal odyssey as I’ve taken, with some vocal help from Neurosis’s Scott Kelly. Massive, molten down tuned riffs collide with psychedelically tinged guitar melodies while the massive rhythm section slows and collapses in unison, until we hear only a slow, tormented breathing and the echoes of some jagged chords. And while “Upon The Sight Of The Other Shore” is a fine Yob track, given that it’s the shortest track and is wedged between two monster songs, it kind of comes and goes, almost like a calm before the storm, despite the song’s down tempo focus on absolute heaviness.

It’s the last song, “Adrift In The Ocean”, that really stunned me on first listen. It’s like the promise that Tool never fully delivered on, a merging of progressive, forward thinking metal with traditional psychedelic principles, without the trappings of retro schtick. It’s trance inducing, it’s hypnotic, it literally is the sound of Atman, and it is the sound of Yob. At 13 minutes, it shows that the journey into the vast flowing waters of the universal subconscious is a lengthy journey in and of itself, and can be as rewarding as the final destination. Despite its length, I think the melodies and some of the more traditional, rock based riffs and hooks in the chorus make this one of the most accessibly Yob tracks to date.

When all is said and done, this is one of the most vital heavy releases of 2011. It has not only legs, it has a brain, and a soul, and it walks around speaking to us, if we allow it to. It has taught us about Yob, and it can teach us about ourselves, about what lies beneath all of the heaviness of our lives, what the heaviness of existence really means to us. Or, alternately, it can be just a great listen to sit back, set the mood, and go along for the ride. Ultimately, Yob deliver us the means for experiencing our own personal Atma, but they leave it up to us how far down the rabbit hole of inner self discovery we wish to travel.



I was here, but I dis-appare. You can get it if you really want, but you must try, try and try, you succeed at last.

 Post subject: Re: Yob - Atma
PostPosted: Sat Sep 03, 2011 10:47 am 
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Joined: Sun Dec 05, 2010 11:04 am
Posts: 3301
Location: Albuquerque
Throw on some headphones, crank some Atma, and enjoy.

 Post subject: Re: Yob - Atma
PostPosted: Sun Sep 18, 2011 7:55 pm 
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Joined: Mon Dec 06, 2010 5:19 pm
Posts: 1565
Location: Massachusetts
I never did end up getting "Cessation", so I'm not sure how this compares, but it doesn't have much of the immediacy of "Unreal Never Lived". Much of this is probably due to the rougher production, more in line with the earlier stuff. It was actually pretty hard to get past at first, similar to the new Cave In and some older albums I've got like "Surrounded By Thieves". "Art Of Self Defense" was mentioned as a reference point when Mike was being asked about the kind of sound he was going for, so this makes sense.

It does start to rule when it gets rolling though, and there are certainly areas that sound fairly unlike anything they'd gone for before. The Scott Kelly guest spot sounds exactly like what you're imagining, but it definitely fits the track and comes in at the perfect time. More than anything, the swirl and rushing waves of guitar are still what it's all about, but they make good use of the quiet moments. I like it, but I wouldn't say it totally floored me. Maybe it's just my old stoner doom cynicism. I'd love to hear it live, I'm sure it would really come together more for me. And at any rate, Yob paraphrase Black Sabbath.

"5 feet away look up to a 9 footer with shoulders as wide as your dashboard and see if you care how progressives are telling you how to think." -Dong, on bigfoot and politics.

 Post subject: Re: Yob - Atma
PostPosted: Mon Jun 03, 2019 10:25 pm 
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Joined: Fri Nov 09, 2012 11:07 pm
Posts: 39
RalphSnart wrote:
I never did end up getting "Cessation", so I'm not sure how this compares, but it doesn't have much of the immediacy of "Unreal Never Lived".

never did really "come to terms" with Atma and ended up selling the LP. Which fucks me off cos I tried so hard to like it after quite rooting "Unreal Never Lived."

Well, for about 15 minute spells anyway

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