Seasoned Portland instrumental out-rock quartet Grails are set to release their fifth album, Deep Politics. It the first in three years. During the time off, drummer Emil Amos (aka Holy Sons) recorded God Is Good, his first album with his other full-time band Om, and multi-instrumentalist Zak Riles released a self-titled collection on Important. They also clearly focused onDeep Politics: The eight-song album’s a dark, layered, ambitious collection (complete with string arrangement by Tim Harris). As far as its composition, they mention the “fetishistic cut-and-paste production techniques” of RZA and MF Doom and of being influenced by ’70s Italian film scores and “obscure occult/fringe library music.” It works beautifully as a whole — one extended cinematic collage — but each song has no problem functioning as its own stand-alone soundtrack/incidental excursion. As far as comparisons, think of a smooth combo of Sun City Girls, recent Earth, Ben Chasny (in ambiance, spirit), and cocktail-hour Rod McKuen. Or just listen to the post-rocked Western, “Almost Grew My Hair.” Make sure to stick around for the anti-finale.
“Almost Grew My Hair”‘s followed by another 8-minute track, “I Led Three Lives”:
Additional puzzle pieces:
Deep Politics is out 3/8 via Temporary Residence.