Thisquietarmy ‎– Anthems For Catharsis


[Reviewed by: Iaha Crax]

Being of a noble post-rock extraction, Eric Quach finds it suitable to his expanded musical view to make his own way on the sinuous track of atmospheric music under this monicker. He’s very much of an improviser at heart, building his compositions around a guitar-based arpeggio which is being withdrawn and presented again throughout diverse chromatics and cosmetics. This is how he begins his record from Consouling Sounds, by “Ruminations”, letting us sweep inside that soothing and irremediably nostalgic hue of post-rock, like an introduction to his own understanding of catharsis. From these soft declarations of white verses he moves on to “Purgation/Purification”, on a short access of extreme metal, like an aching teeth pulsating, only to resolute in the comfort of a scratching grumble, a translation for the vernacular post-rock frenzy.

Eric comes from Canada and is an incredibly prolific musician, with more than 40 records and 400 live appearances. It is more than a matter of personal taste to dabble in this type of atmospheric music. It can be pleasant, very sentimental and at the same time annoying and pathetic. For example, “From Darkness Redux” plays on cataleptic drones that call to mind a state of empathic indigestion, while “Accommodator” finds the balance of a beautifully solemn industrial/ extreme metal register worn out by protestant rigidity.

All across the album you can perceive references to other artists he has played with, like Nadja or Locrian, projects with a particular sound, especially those basing their sound on meticulously distorted guitars. On “Anthems Of Catharsis” the distortion is the virus of the record, so much that the impression is that every song is but a poor host eaten from inside by this disease, sometimes so drastically that you cannot get a thing out of there, like on “Masquerade”. The disc ends with “Closure”, where one would immediately find something different from the other pieces; unfortunately the difference is the absence of the (programmed) drums that had to be heard and claustrophobically endured along this CD.

Nonetheless, the great number of records released by the project should equal the probability of finding one to everyone’s taste. The epic trans-vagance album “Hex Mountains” or the patriarchal “Blackhaunter” are surely strong recommendations….However, is there a classical music pedant who can claim that he likes all of Haydn’s symphonies? As for these “Anthems Of Catharsis”, I would bet that in a live environment it would sound completely changed and make one experience the true potential of the interpreter.

Thisquietarmy ‎– Anthems For Catharsis
thisquietarmy Records, TQA035; Consouling Sounds, SOULLIII
CD/LP/Digital 2015

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s