Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Absent Sky - Cielo Ausente

Absent Sky is the solo project of Lord guitarist, Willy Rivera, formerly of bands such as Kaemon and Ol' Scratch. For those familiar with those bands, Absent Sky is as far removed from that sound as possible. Sure, there's a certain amount of heaviness but in a different kind of way. What permeates Willy's project is a love for English 80's indie and eletronica. He cites Swans, Depeche Mode, Joy Division, Bauhaus, The Cure and Hüsker Dü amongst his main influences and I agree, although I want to add a strong influx of Killing Joke and Sisters Of Mercy. But that's me of course. Regardless, you could hardly have better inspiration when playing this kind of stuff.

Handling everything himself except drum composition and programming which producer Brandon Dickey took care of, 'Cielo Ausente' caught me off guard at first. In a way it shouldn't because I have followed Willy's career for a long time and I know his affection for the "original" alternative music world. Still, I didn't expect this trip down memory lane. Apart from becoming a heavy metal kid at a very early age, I was also heavily exposed to electronica and indie music thanks to my best friend growing up. So most bands mentioned above are bands I enjoy quite a lot to this day. So imagine my "shock" when opener 'The Mountain' kicks in...a pleasant surprise indeed. And by each spin this wax grows and grows and grows...

One of my immediate favourites on the album is 'The Jester And The Killer'. It has the same vibe and mood as any song on Nick Cave's 'Murder Ballads' mixed with early Paradise Lost. It is so beautiful in all it's brutality and sadness. Another favourite is 'Two Virgins'. Why? Well, it reminds me so much of Thin Lizzy's 'The Friendly Ranger At Clontarf Castle'. Being a crazed Lizzy supporter there's no surprise at my fascination of this song. 'Saving Grace' brings a smile to my face as visions of Hüsker Dü appear before me. Great stuff, you hear!

Shame on me for taking so long to review 'Cielo Ausente'. It came out in March 2014 and it took me a long ass time to bring it to light. Better late than never huh? Well yeah, because Willy has put all his heart and soul into this project and it's been a long time in the making as well. Being busy with other bands, Absent Sky has been forced to utilize whatever time that has been available. But you can tell that despite his other endeavors, this is no half measure.

You want to expand your sphere of music input? Look no further waveriders, because Absent Sky is the band for you. If you like me grew up on this kind of music, 'Cielo Ausente' is the natural expansion of the genre and it is fantastic. So get a copy and let yourself be immersed by this amazing album!

- Swedbeast

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