Newcastle has provided some quality acts over the years, however not since Silverchair have I encountered something revolutionary like Majora’s upcoming release via Bird’s Rope Records.
If you are a fan of Progressive Rock, Metal and instrumental prowess, you are in for a treat with Aphotic.
Opening with ‘The Fear of Falling Forever,’ I close my eyes and visualise floating in the ocean, like I’m escaping from something that has trapped my soul, as guitarists Josh Pascoe and Jared Phillips introduce you to this story. As I’m swept away with guitar picking full of serenity, I’m so relaxed and taken away from all my worries. You don’t fully understand nor accept what is around the corner until you’re forced into it. The sky begins to change as we crash into title track ‘Aphotic.’ This song captivates the listener immediately as you are ripped away from the serenity with crushing drums and chugging riffs not unlike Dead Letter Circus or sleepmakeswaves. It feels like chaos, but it’s somewhat soothing. It’s like someone is telling you that everything is going to be okay. But you know what, maybe everything will be okay, because ‘Every Shadow is Threatened by Morning Light.’ This song takes you out of the storm and into the dawn of a new day. Chris Hoole (bass / synth / samples) and Kirk Hamilton-Ritchie (drums) stomp on your chest. They’re tight, courageous and at times overwhelming as they set the dynamic shifts that fight back the darkness that is swallowing the world. As the song glides into the fourth track ‘Tidal,’ everything else becomes a blissful dream as the story builds to its crescendo. I have a smile, such is the infectious nature of what is now one of my favourite tracks. Everything is working in harmony and I find myself at ‘Kursk’ to start the final chapter. A ‘Descent’ into a two-part thriller. An epic for the masses.
As far as production goes it is a gold standard release. There is plenty of warmth in their tones and soundscapes, as well as a comfortable degree of separation between each instrumental layer, creating a wealth of clarity and definition. Aphotic has turned into somewhat of a theatrical masterpiece in my mind. After I closed my eyes my whole world around me changed and my outlook is forward thinking and positive. The EP is finished off charismatically by ‘Kursk – Requiem.’ As a listener you feel satisfied with your encounter at this point. As the final track ends it sets a tone, or perhaps an evil twist depending on your perspective. A twist that prepares you for a revolution. What kind of revolution? Well, maybe Majora can take you there when the boys hit the road next.
Make sure you get your hands on this release September 15th. This is my favourite release this year thus far and is a catalyst for hope and prosperity if you open your mind and allow yourself to go on this adventure.