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Gothic Rock

49 Burning Condors are arrestingly ablaze in their Southern Gothic album, Seventh Hymnal

49 Burning Condors released a strong contender for the album of the year with their latest tribally awakening release, Seventh Hymnal. Penned during lockdown, the 7-track release traverses some tender topics; with the sonorous amalgam of goth rock and occultist alchemy, it is as bewitching as it is emboldening.

It isn’t often I’m left speechless. But considering the very nature of Seventh Hymnal is to express what can never be portrayed through words alone, the arrested daze that 49 Burning Condors left me in speaks volumes of their ability to run with an powerful concept and take you along for the visceral ride until you’re subsequently soothed by the sonic vernacular.

The album opens on the swampy stripped-back bluesy single, Bayou, before Little Death delivers a haunting ode to frailty through baroque strings, sparse vocals and hypnotic percussion. Track 3, Willow Tree, lets the compassion pour through the gentle folkish melodicism before Red Drum Skin will make you want to lead a sacrificial lamb to slaughter. Track 5, Noonday, one of the previously released singles stands as a profound testament to the vocal soul from Kimber before the album concludes on the sorrowfully sublime title single, which is just as cinematic as Ramin Djawadi’s work on Westworld.

Here’s what 49 Burning Condors have to say about their latest release:

“Seventh Hymnal was written during the pandemic; a time of abounding uncertainty, where death loomed around every corner, and chaos lingered in our world, homes, and veins. Our songs are dripping with stories of grief, bodies floating down the river, men drowning to a siren’s song, and of the gods worshipped, who ultimately turned calamitous.

Seventh Hymnal is not only an outpouring of all the things we wanted to say but couldn’t express in regular words to those we loved and even to ourselves, but a benediction and examination of a woman’s role of power in the world of men.”

Seventh Hymnal will stream across all platforms from September 7th. Hear it on SoundCloud and Spotify.

For more info, head over to their official website or follow them on Instagram.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

LIVE REVIEW: The Vaulted Skies at The Angel, Nottingham 24/09/2021

The Vaulted Skies were one of the few bands that became the soundtrack to my insanity during lockdown. When they announced their show at The Angel in Nottingham supporting Lesbian Bed Death, I obviously had to be there in full unashamed fangirl fashion.

Starting with their sludgy hard-hitter, Hollowhead, they instantly asserted their ability to create an atmosphere where hearing the music becomes secondary to feeling it. After a delicate guitar intro that feeds intoxicating post-punk opium vibes, they slammed into an arresting amalgamation of shoegaze, rock and grunge with Molko-Esque vocals that cut above the noise.

Originally it was their gothy dancey hit, Does Anyone Else Feel (Strange)? which ended the set that won me over; the mix of inimitably intricate guitars over a filthy four-on-the-floor beat naturally had me hooked. But with the emergence of their demo release of their slower indie single, Almost Happy, my adoration became far more multifaceted.

Whether they’re creating floor-fillers or stripped-back melodic tracks, there’s a magnetism that proves emotion always comes before ego, which makes it so easy to lose yourself in their sonic alchemy through the sense of unfiltered connectedness.

The Vaulted Skies is easily one of the most criminally underrated alternative acts in the UK right now. Anyone with a proclivity towards pensiveness and pioneering alt-rock should be paying attention.

Listen on YouTube, Spotify, SoundCloud

Photo Credit: Rich Lindley Photography

Review by Amelia Vandergast