[sic] Magazine

Lasael – Foghorn EP

Disciples of the reformed-Swans school of noise-rock, Lasael are an intense four-piece from Milan that compress decades of confrontational experimentation into a blistering debut EP that doesn’t just catch the ear, but severs it completely for the band to wear round their necks as some macabre trophy.

Reflecting an uneasy relationship with faith, bemoaning the shallow modern world, embracing the nihilistic cycles of life and death, and doubling-down on schizophrenic self-examination, Foghorn is a near-religious experience that speaks in howled tongues, the band’s disorientating, ritualistic online visuals only hastening the head-spin.

A bruising first encounter, spectacular lead single “Normal Bunny” combines dark pulses, industrial rhythms, and harsh rimshots with tense string drone, Jesse Perret’s solemn vocal trudging towards inevitable conflict. An unstoppable mass, “Villages” initially relies on Luca Brunelli’s leaden drums that hit like falling sledgehammers, its full-rig climax later invoking some titan shouting down the throat of a hurricane.

The hardest material the Ramber Records label have put out to date by some distance, “Blind Worm Cycle” in turn throws up a wall of grinding sheet-metal, chainsaw drone battling with thunderous chug, a moment of disturbing semantic clarity rising from the maelstrom: “I would rather die with the wolves than die in your mental hospitals.” Finding another level still, the elementally powerful “Alone Bliss” revels in churning gothic doom, dizzying keys crawling out of the mix like maggots, while the relatively restrained EP closer, “Windsor Levels”, pits its uneasy collection of chimes and Andrea Palmas’s crumpled bass against Stefano Lattanzio’s open-handed strumming on rusty strings that resemble garottes.

In lesser hands, Foghorn could have been little more than an abrasive blast, but it’s so well mixed that every show of shock-and-awe is matched by precision attacks of crystalline percussion, synth and strings. Lasael are exactly the kind of band you wanna get in on at ground level in order to share in their undoubted rise to the top.

~The Foghorn EP is released December 8th via Ramber Records.~