Akarusa Yami – Heavy Climb

Rating: 2.5/5
Self released
Buy Album [URL]: https://akarusayami.bandcamp.com/album/heavy-climb
Band Website: https://www.facebook.com/akarusayami

Pic (1)Band line-up:

Tom – Vocals
TK – Guitars
Jake – Bass
Julia – Guitars
Tweak – Drums and Backing Vocals

  1. The Old Man By The Fjord
  2. At Last, Sunlight (Endlich, Sonnenlicht)
  3. Heavy Climb
  4. Long Nights In The City (Instrumental)
  5. A Monument Built To Carnal Desire
  6. And The Night Will Take Us All
  7. I Work In Formaldehyde
  8. Loving Parents (Instrumental)
  9. Les Mere Terribles
  10. The Natasha Trade Feat. Joy Shannon

Nottinghamshire band Akarusa Yami began in 2010 when Tom Clarke (guitar) united with Tom Brumpton (Vocals) to create a techno/insdustrial/sci-fi metal band. Adam Jones (Drums), Damian Lee (Guitar), Jake Bennett (Bass) and Lee Dowling (Keyboards) joined up and in 2011 they released their first EP, ‘Ouroboros’ and played Bloodstock. A further Ep, ‘Trace Element Rebirth’ allowed them to build on that success, now in 2015 they release their debut album ‘Heavy Climb’ and return to Bloodstock. Julie Goatly joins on guitar and the album features a collaboration with Joy Shannon (Beauty Marks).

‘The Old Man By The Fjord’ opens the album, a mix of melodic clean vocals with rich harmonies contrasting against gravelly screamed lyrics. The music is interesting and varied, and crosses genres in a surprising manner, something also evident in the 2nd track, ‘At Last, Sunlight (Endlich, Sonnenlicht)’ which switches from 80’s pop to screamed metal, with drums varying between heavy triggers and subtle rhythms, this is the meeting of two styles.

Title track ‘Heavy Climb’ has electro-pop synths underneath the metal core, but unlike the previous tracks it does not have the harmonies, instead carrying the scream vocal throughout. ‘Long Nights In The City’ is an atmospheric instrumental, sounding like something from a soundtrack to a film, charming and strange rolled into one. ‘A Monument Built to Carnal Desire’ becomes frantic and desperate, quite animal at times. ‘And The Night Will Take Us All’ punches the listener repeatedly in the head, screamed vocals keep time with the sharp drum beats, while contrasting almost Jazz styled sections captivate the listener in an unexpected manner.

The electro synths of ‘I Work in Formaldehyde’ gives it a very sci-fi foundation, while the venom of the vocals is clear, snarled out as they are. ‘Loving Parents’ is another short instrumental, unusual and effective, leading to the odd ‘Les Mere Terribles’ which has almost psychedelic moments. Lastly, ‘The Natasha Trade’ featuring Joy Shannon from Beauty Marks begins with doomy piano, discordant and dark,  this is joined by strange noises, sampled sounds and a story of intrigue is spoken by Joy Shannon in breathless words, that create a sense of fear and danger, this is a very experimental track, and most bizarre. Again this is not something I would choose to listen to, though at times it has some really well put together elements, it is too weird for my liking.

The wonderful rich harmonies in the 1st two tracks are sadly never seen again, its certainly daring to be different and the final track is completely unlike anything else on the album, which makes it hard to define their sound and that in turn makes it harder to get into the style of the album and identify with it musically. It is brave, just won’t suit everyone and the strangeness means it won’t be a commercial success, a niche market that gives the band the freedom to create. Its certainly interesting.

Review By Lisa Nash