Progressive death metal benchmarks Gorguts are streaming their fantastic new album-length composition Pleiades’ Dust today. This recording is currently the frontrunner — you might say presumptive nominee — for my 2016 AOTY. I’ve gone on about Pleiades’ Dust at length already here, and at substantially greater length here, so I’ll spare you guys further exegesis. (FOR NOW.)
The album premiered over at Decibel, and their post includes an amusing artist statement from Gorguts founder and mastermind Luc Lemay, among other things:
It with great joy that we can finally share this new sonic painting with you. I must say that I’ve been looking forward this moment for quite some time now. I couldn’t be more proud of this new amalgam of themes, ambiances and surprises that appeared along the process of carving this new composition. I like to call them “happy accidents”. That’s what the beauty of writing and composing is all about.
I’m also very happy that the story of a long forgotten library made his way to my curiosity. With this theme, I was able to pay an ode to those ancient thinkers, to the beauty of books and history. Three things that have been fascinating me for a long, long time.
The amateur artists among you may recognize “happy accidents” as one of beloved TV paint-along instructor Bob Ross’s many catchphrases. It is exceedingly weird to hear this bit of folksy encouragement coming from a death metal musician…but, welp, Gorguts is an exceedingly weird band, and Lemay is seriously about as lovable and cuddly as Ross whenever he’s not fucking murdering his guitar and vocal cords onstage. (Though he and his bandmates are way better at their craft, with all due respect to Bob.) Try striking up a conversation with him at the Gorguts merch table next time they come to your town for proof.
You can and very much should dive into Pleiades’ Dust below, but one quick word of advice before you do: Take your time and listen more than once. Gorguts’ music has always been challenging, and while this record is as good as anything they’ve done, its ambitious structure requires multiple attentive spins before it really gives up the goods. If you’re having trouble getting over the hump, try breaking it down into four movements, as bassist Colin Marston suggests in this interview. The rewards merit the effort, believe me.
Pleiades’ Dust is out 5/13 via Season Of Mist.