Montecore – House Fire Times

Montecore is back yet again with a new EP. House Fire Times is their third release so far. While their self-titled debut had more variety in style and instrumentation and second release One Night blended drone rock rhythms with thick shoegaze noise, House Fire Times manages to combine both. A balance between sturdy Krautrock and experimental music with heavy influences of noise rock and electronica.

“Your Stunning Heart” starts with a rumbling drum and bass line with a resolute punchiness and pacing. This acts as a drone beat, with minor variations sprinkled in between. The galloping rhythm is topped with alien synth effects that weave and oscillate around each other, like radio signals fighting over frequencies. A catchy lead riff then emerges and takes over the identity of the song. Wooden percussion joins in with the mass of sounds, giving it an ethnic character that contrasts the trippy electronic noise.  

“Weed Snob” is lighter and carries more introspection than its predecessor. The drums start in with a more irregular and freeform manner but sobers up when the synth swells come in. Crooning strings coalesce with a glow of ethereal noise. This ascending line evokes a feeling of reaching out to somewhere but never getting there. An eternal journey across an ever-expansive universe. 

“Most of Us” starts with a marching rhythm. A radiating chord progression that gathers together the fluttering keys and rhythm section in a slow but coordinated advance. A synth line starts off as calm and serene yet develops into a sharp screech, which  challenges the unity of the other instruments. An abrasive wall of noise invades by the midpoint, and breaks the whole equilibrium. Still the bassline and drums manage to punch through. A war between order and chaos ensues at the thundering climax of the track.  

“Study Sesh” has the most tension and unease in this EP. It starts off as mysterious and foreboding, like a breeze that’s creeping up on you. The aural pallet remains similar to the other tracks, but the melodies feel like their in an endless ascent on a tight slope. Seven minutes of escalating intensity, either from the tightening rhythms or the synths that are constantly grinding through. 

House Fire Times feels more spontaneous and organic than previous releases. This is Montecore getting into the groove and refining their style while still maintaining the drive for exploration. This EP is a hypnotic experience and a solid addition to their rapidly growing discography.

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