Wavering Radiant is the fifth full-length album by post-metal band Isis. Set release dates are April 21, 2009 for the vinyl version and May 5, 2009 for the CD version – both to be released on Ipecac Records.
Very rarely is it that I find an album that seems to truly encompass what a band has accomplished since their inception. Isis may have done that with Wavering Radiant. I can hear bits and pieces of things very familiar from Oceanic, In the Absence of Truth, Panopticon, and Celestial. The opening riff of the album sounds incredibly like the riff from “Celestial (The Tower)” (which was essentially the album opener for Celestial). Even given the fact that they have borrowed a lot of stuff from their older albums, they still seemed to make it fresh. The amount of ambient and background textures on this album amazes me. They are all incredible, and set totally different moods than I am used to hearing from Isis. One piece in particular is about two-thirds of the way through “Stone to Wake a Serpent” in which there are many layers that give the song a very ghostly and ethereal sound (mainly the piano that sits behind the wall of guitars), this along with the new-found lead guitar textures.
Like every Isis (and post-metal/post-rock) album, every song is an epic adventure lasting of no less than seven minutes, aside from the title track, which is only a minute and forty-eight seconds long. What I assume to be the first single from the album, “20 Minutes/40 Years” might be the best track on the album, and is streaming on the band’s myspace, is truly a musical adventure. It definitely does not break any boundaries for post-metal or Isis, but they really got it right on this track. Whenever music actually takes you places, it can only be a good thing.
For anyone who likes some good post-metal, Isis would be my first choice, and seems to be all but leading their genre at this point. This album can only further solidify them as the most impressively consistent band in the post-metal arena. I think this album rates on the level of anything they have done yet. It is just as heavy, just as atmospheric, and just as amazing.
Track picks: “20 Minutes/40 Years” and “Ghost Key”
Overall Score: 9.5/10 devil horns
For me personally, Panopticon was the best Isis album untill Wavering Rediant. Progressive, but still Post-Metal. That’s It! Period!
It’s really tough to say which album is the best for me. They are all so fantastic, but Wavering Radiant could easily be the best.
i felt wavering radient was a bit of a let down myself. It could be the fact that theyre one of my favorite bands and that i built it up a bit too much in my own head, but i feel that the band havent tried to do anything new here. A lot of the new riffs, vocals etc sound very similar to previous material. but maybe its a grower like In the abscence of truth which didnt impact me instantly. I absorbed it over a period of months and one day there was a clicking noise in my brain and ive loved it ever since!
Yeah, It really did not ‘Wow!’ me on my first listen or two. The differences are very subtle. I think you will come to really love this album as you did with In The Absence of Truth
(also, no worries about the double post, I took care of it)
Looking forward to hearing it. They’ve been putting out some really strong stuff.
When is Godspeed You Black Emperor! Going to get off their asses? Have you heard “Happy Family”, great band from Japan, made two records, eponymous and “Tosco” brilliant. Also, Sleepytime Gorilla Museum, another band, is pretty out there. Cuneiform Reocrds and http:// gnosis2000.net have a lot of great suggestions for other perhaps previously untapped metalesque happy times.
You might like Anglagaard which is a Swedish King Crimsonish band from the 1990s that is just about to re-issue their two, very awesome and highly sought by collectors, two album discography. I fucking love bands that make one or two brilliant records that are popular “amongst the subgenre” set and they have the balls to just walk away.
And, Joe Barressi….take a bow. One of the best hard rock and metal producers in the game. The low end on this fucker is immaculate.
I can’t wait to own this on CD, and listen to it in my Sennheiser HD 555’s – Isis always deliver for me in terms of pure soundscape, regardless of how awesome their music is.
Jordan, do you happen to know which two tracks Tool’s Adam Jones guests on?
Sadly, I do not know that, but I’m sure it can’t be too hard to find with some digging.
FYI, Adam Jones plays on the opening track and on the ambient interlude.
Oh, cool, I was not sure what two track he was featured on. Thanks for the heads up!
It’s good by not as amazing as the last three Cult Of Luna albums.