Baltimore’s Horse Lords bring a ferocity to the saxophone that you just don’t hear enough these days. The quartet has made its name playing with bands like Guardian Alien and Guerilla Toss, and while these guys hit the same levels of fervor as those bands, Horse Lords usually prefer to build up to it via sprawling arrangements. “Outer East” opens the band’s upcoming second album, Hidden Cities, with a colossal 13-minute groove, one that seems loose and improvised. But close listens to any section reveal a staggering intricacy, as bass, guitar, drums, and that delay-effected sax all simmer together, growing in pressure. It’s simply an incredible way to start an album. But it’s not only the explosive, earned finale that makes “Outer East” such an exciting song — the preceding slow burn of the fuse is just as impressive. Listen to it below.
Hidden Cities is out 11/4 via NNA Tapes.