RISE TO THE SKY - EVERY DAY, A FUNERAL
WINTER IS COMING EARLY
If you have just finished doing some early summer planting in your garden then you might want to check for scything blizzards and frosted desolation after listening to this. It’s not unfair to say that Rise to the Sky’s ponderous, crestfallen doom melded with wistful gothic reflection won’t get them nominated for a spot on Now That’s What I Call Hits of the Summer compilations. The nature of this genre of music means it can be overpowering at times. Let’s be honest, sitting through an entire album of ceaseless grief-stricken tales of loss is probably nutritionally inadvisable every day. And admittedly, seeing the opening title track of this record with a whopping 9 minute run-time, might have you performing the brace position.
Thankfully, Rise to the Sky (a multi-instrumental solo musician from Chile) demonstrate self-awareness and cognisance of the potential hazards of playing such emotionally intense music. Of course, Every Day, a Funeral is as weighty and bleak as the title suggests, but is mashed up with some very welcome shading and depth that provides some balance and regular breathing spaces.
Firstly, you can perhaps quite accurately call this doom but it is not of the discordant, scuzzy mountainous variety. It is, in fact, deceivingly melodic. Try, for instance, Just Say Goodbye or the irresistible tunefulness of Epilogue which are, for the most part, hushed and airy thrummed quasi-ballads whose gentle melodies are kind of uplifting – well, almost. Further still, interspersed throughout the record are nice extended piano and acoustic passages of soothing and plaintive sorrow. As is so often the case, heavy music can really shine when it comes to delicacy and Rise to the Sky have a very neat touch with when it comes to subdued melancholy. This is basted with orchestral flourishes and muted harmonies that give this an ‘End Credit’ melo-drama.
Every Day, a Funeral is slow and unfolding music. The primary gear of funereal plod would struggle to win a race against some fatigued pallbearers. Yet the riffs, leads and hooks – though tortured and slo-mo are really quite melodic and good quality. These progressions have not been thrown together but have been written with care. If you think My Dying Bride stripped of the pomp and dread but ramped up with the poignant delicacy and you’re getting close.
That is not to say this isn’t heavy as it most certainly is dense. The vocals are invariably at the lowest possible, inhuman and unintelligible deathly register. The guttural eruptions sound lower in the mix and baked into the sound almost as an ambient feature and are like cold draughts of bear growls sweeping out a forgotten cavern. That, along, with occasional rampaging bursts of tempo, keep this metal and monstrously heavy enough for baying diehards.
In terms of mood this is full-on intensely saturnine stuff that is remorselessly brooding and tear-jerking. It is big on gothic romance but without the overblown theatricality that term might suggest. The lighter melodies are a boon to the sheer emotional gravity, but check your garden to be safe in case winter has come early.
Check out Rise to the Sky's bandcamp at risetothesky.bandcamp.com