Ichabod – 2012 EP

Ichabod - 2012 EP

Ichabod - 2012 EP

Part System Of A Down and Swedish D-beat phenomenon Disfear, Massachusetts’ own Ichabod blasts into this 8 song EP with the distinct technicality of the likes of Mastodon and Bloodlet. Enough name dropping in one sentence?  This only raises the bar and puts Ichabod at a non-distinct level where they remain un-categorizable. The riffs are that of sludge in the middle of a Mississippi summer, but melodic enough to please even the most astute stoner metal aficionado.

I find it ever so relevant that the first track off of their fourth release over a ten year stint is titled “Sleeping Giant”. Ichabod may be just that. Like that of a hiss playing through a blown speaker, “Sleeping Giant” begins slow and rather mellow. At around two minutes – like a punch in the face – the track rages into high speed only to break back down, churning for a few moments before picking it right back up. “Sleeping Giant” is a four and a half minute literal juggernaut of sludge and speed, ending with the most annoying of all back woods sounds noticeable to anyone who grew up in the middle of nowhere surrounded by swamps. The very Alice In Chains-esque “Giving Up The Ghost” may seem to fit with this comparison seeing as how both are just as illusive as their musical counterparts. “Giving Up The Ghost” breaks off mid-way and opens into a terror of a track as vocalist Ken MacKay swallows glass and blows his throat with white knuckle fury. “Breathe a sigh of relief” MacKay howls and it feels like it’s the only answer, even if it isn’t.

Track three, “Gentlemen Of The Choir”, haunts very much in the same way as the Montesano, WA legends The Melvins did on “Night Goat” from their Houdini album. Here we are treated to a mystery as to what happened two years ago on Christmas night in Lowell. The sirens wail in the first offering and are slow to begin here on “Gentlemen Of The Choir”. It is like that of a rocket and light show that echo their dream-like state throughout the opening. Yet again, Ichabod explodes with raging, gas fuelled disregard. Not to be mistaken, the members of Ichabod have a total regard for their instrumentation and are fully aware of how they craft it. Ichabod amaze at the use of what appears to be a flute in the last bit of this track. Such an odd instrument to be included on this eight minute opus but, consider it a rare gift that Ichabod can garnish the audacity.

We see it clear on track four with a cover of the Pink Floyd song “Nile Song”. Being a fan of just two Floyd records, Umma Gumma and Meddle, I still bow and give my kudos to these four Massachusetts gentlemen for even attempting such a feat. A superior cover with an “Interstellar Overdrive” shadow – ironically enough a song also covered by The Melvins. All things interweave in the music world more or less and we are blind if we cannot notice the similarity in all styles and genres. Think of music as a whole, a community of like minds and you’ll understand how everything is influenced by everything and that we hear many a likeness to particular bands when we hear other artists. I always enjoy and appreciate when bands step outside the box and show their influences head on. We saw it on the Evergreen Terrace album Writers Block as well as the Between The Buried And Me album The Anatomy Of.

The “untitled” fifth track is a short eighteen second thunderous rant ending with what could be heard at the end of a game show question where the contestant is left for a moment to ponder before stating his/her answer. Straight into track six, “New Years Prayer” is a sample more or less warning us all of a new world order, a doomsday premonition that could be seen as just filler among the eight tracks. “2012” has a welcomed bass intro, snare hit, and ride cymbal dome slamming Gojira style “Oroborus” head up and down track. Slow in its movement and just as impressive musically as the rest of the album, a raging Kim Thayil bred solo bolts through the track and lifts the listener just as the ambient, tribal ending of this track does. Closing out the record is track eight, “2012 Outro”. In the spirit of making sense, “2012 Outro” begins as “2012” ends on that of a tribal, end of the world message fitting the recent news flash of 2012 being the year of our eminent doom and destruction. This album outro will truly frighten the listener much as that of an exorcism. If you’ve been “fortunate” enough as I have to have heard the recordings from the Anneliese Michel exorcism then you’ll know where I’m coming from. Picture if you will “2012 Outro” being the soundtrack to the opening of the film 28 Days Later where the lone monkey is strapped to the table watching television screens of violence and murder.

Ichabod has the works of a true and non-genre specific style. Although comparisons are easy if one pays enough attention but it is quite a noble thing for an artist to go above and beyond and create something new, and unique. Ichabod have done just that. With 2012 they’ve successfully put out an album that will fit nowhere, I mean that as a compliment. Their listener will welcome them, and find as I did a sound that knows no limits in its uniqueness. The eight tracks are from the same band but cannot be boxed, even after ten years.

Rootsucker Records

Brad Tilbe About Brad Tilbe

I am 35 years old. I was born and raised in Central New York. I currently reside in Seattle, WA.