>>The constant search for music that’s based on ripping guitar riffs, booming bass lines, and whirlwind drumming has been put on hold. It’s temporary, and this time has nothing to do with our modern infectious times. There is, in fact, guitar players left on this earth, a strange sight and enlightening to find one, a rare bald eagle in a sea of ordinary crows and gulls. It honestly feels at times that no one plays guitar anymore, and not simple chord structures while emulating the latest version of Carly or Bob, a hunched over wool capped youth waxing poetic over an acoustic, but shredding limb from limb everyone in sight with the battle axe, leaving your mouth agape and salivating while your face melts.
Meet Haishen, named so after the God of the Sea, each song on the soon to be released album with a nautical theme, including this one, Beluga. It starts out with an almost, easy going, country-metal vibe that could easily be taken for Metalica, a long pop- punk intro, or the latest from Hank the III. But it starts to take a turn after the first 40 seconds and suddenly you’re surprised. Get used to that. The nearly seven-minute-long song will have you surprised and again and again and again.
There are so many amazing qualities to this song that you absolutely have to hear it from yourself. It’s Umphrey’s McGee meets Phish meets Megadeath meets 90’s pop-punk. Imagine if Trey Anastasio, Dave Mustaine, and Fat Mike combined to make the guitar version of Voltron. And maybe that’s what Haishen is, super-powered, in aesthetics and noise.
The drummer evenly displays straight rock and roll skills while suddenly bursting into Stewart Copeland, pulling the sticks from bell to ride and back again effortlessly. It’s difficult to know how each musician follows each other, the bassist staying in a perfect rhythm with the sharp, bouncing kick. Who is in the lead doesn’t make a difference and you could imagine them all leading at once. This track is a mashup of what could be several other songs, seamlessly gliding in and out of themes and vibes. It’s a convertible ride along California State Highway 1 full of emotional outburst.
These are artfully talented musicians who have obviously spent countless hours playing together, understanding each other’s internal rhythms, talking endlessly about music, life, and karma. They are succinct and it’s not post production magic that’s tightening the laces. It’s who they are and it’s obvious. Every sound is thought out, from the turn of each drum key to the depth and width of the base to the detailed guitar effects.
Beluga is an instrumental song which begs the question of whether or not this band will be completely instrumental or not. And if so, does that matter? Haishen might stay instrumental, or maybe just these three tracks are. This is an excellent first release and if above all else will keep you tuned into what they will do next. There’s too much talent here to go unnoticed and if the next two songs on their first release bring the heat like Beluga they’re will be no second guessing on how washed away you get by their tsunami of sound. This is Post Metal Prog-Rock at its acme. Bookmark this band, there’s a serious storm brewing and the best is yet to come.