Stellamorphic is a two-piece band comprised of Justin Holt and Matthew Folger. The duo recently released an LP entitled The Somnium Drift. They play heavier rock that tries to reach for the cosmos. More often than not the band loads up on reverb and tries to go for epic sounding stuff. For comparison sakes a band with a similar sound would be Comets On Fire.
This is a dense album that is arduous to get through in one sitting. In no way is it because the songwriting is subpar but because of the sheer length and the fact that there aren’t many hooks. That being said the band does a good job of mixing it up.
They start “Seri” which sounds like it's jam session from a ‘9’s grunge band that is thinking about introducing psychedelia in their sound. Some of the riffs shout Soundgarden although you won't hear Chris Cornell. In fact I could barely hear anyone. There is a voice but it’s barely audible. It sounds like a faint, distant ghost at points of Maynard James Keenan. What I believe is a cello really helps this song stand out and feels unique.
“4TTK” is an eight-plus-minute song that you could argue is more metal than grunge. The vocals are more audible this time around although I could still barely make out a single word. Around the six-minute mark the band lays off the distortion before breaking in a cosmic guitar solo. The band has some success with the solo acoustic song “D” and not as much with a run of the mill alternative track called “108°.”
The band gets back on track with “3 Sheets” that has a couple of inspired moments. The band has their most inspired creativity on “Mezame.” They successfully implement a heavy, cosmic soundscape towards the end of the song. This is really the sound the band should be striving for more often than not as the more standard alternative stuff has been done to death.
The Somnium Drift has its mishaps but the good outweighs the marginal. Recommended.
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