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Kruger - "Redemption Through Looseness" (CD)

Kruger - "Redemption Through Looseness" CD cover image

"Redemption Through Looseness" track listing:

1. Ammunition Matters (5:16)
2. Queen Of The Meadow (4:58)
3. The Graveyard Party (3:37)
4. Hummers Vs Pedestrians (4:24)
5. Holy Fire (8:40)
6. Army Of Lovers (4:51)
7. War & Wine (4:09)
8. The Cowboy Song (1:56)
9. Crusaders (8:14)

Reviewed by on June 11, 2010

"...Neurosis and Baroness collided in a massive, cataclysmic event, producing a new entity that takes all the best parts from both, amplifies them, and adds its own."

Post metal seems to be somewhat of a trend nowadays. While each band has their own sound, all of them, to some degree, share the same sludgy feel. Kruger is a post metal band that definitely draws influence from bands like Neurosis and Isis, but does an excellent job of defining their own place in the metal world. While “Redemption Through Looseness” has the intricacies of any good post metal band, they are much heavier than one would expect. The best way I can describe this band is that Neurosis and Baroness collided in a massive, cataclysmic event, producing a new entity that takes all the best parts from both, amplifies them, and adds its own.

This album is packed full of content from start to finish, and while this intricate interplay between musical elements is enough to grab the listener and captivate them, the biggest draw of “Redemption Through Looseness” is the pure energy with which this album grabs you and drags you in. It’s exciting, unflinching, and unforgiving. The math-y riffs combined with the downtuned chug of the rhythm guitar creates an absolutely unrelenting atmosphere. The drumming is mixed perfectly and is chaotic, cathartic and complex with absolutely addictive fills. The bass, unlike far too many metal albums, is audible and mixed well. I would say this album is equal parts progressive and heavy, with neither side being sacrificed for the other. The balance is what really drives this album. Kruger could be playing a lighter, more progressive part, when suddenly the bottom drops out into an utter emotionally charge assault.

While all of the songs boast complexity and intricacy, Kruger has included some simpler sections that serve well as breaks in the music and, in some cases, just plain catchiness. For example, I could pick out the intro to “Queen of the Meadow” immediately. This song features a beautiful solo that registers in lighter regions and contrasts well with the thick sludge that persists throughout. "Hummers Vs. Pedestrians" is a bit of a different song, consisting almost solely of an epic buildup to a brutal, in-your-face breakdown that approaches straight hardcore. It’s a great song, but definitely not the strongest on the album.

Where some bands focus solely on how proficient they are and how strange the time signature is, Kruger hasn’t forgotten to get back to good, heavy metal that gets the blood racing. Each song fits cohesively together into an album and brings a sort of pure sonic aggression that is electrifying and highly addictive. This band makes me want to break things.

I must say, this album kind of blew me away. The sheer force present here is jaw-dropping. I can’t imagine only listening to this album once; it takes multiple plays through to absorb the immense amount of details present here. This is one that comes highly recommended in my book.

Highs: Awe-inspiring proficiency fuses with a down to earth heaviness.

Lows: A little more attention to detail could have been paid on "Hummers Vs. Pedestrians"

Bottom line: A cathartic, pulse-pounding post metal listen that brands itself as familiar, yet so distinctive.

Rated 4 out of 5 skulls
4 out of 5 skulls

Rating Description
Rated 5 out of 5 skulls Perfection. (No discernable flaws; one of the reviewer's all-time favorites)
Rated 4.5 out of 5 skulls Near Perfection. (An instant classic with some minor imperfections)
Rated 4 out of 5 skulls Excellent. (An excellent effort worth picking up)
Rated 3.5 out of 5 skulls Good. (A good effort, worth checking out or picking up)
Rated 3 out of 5 skulls Decent. (A decent effort worth checking out if the style fits your tastes)
Rated 2.5 out of 5 skulls Average. (Nothing special; worth checking out if the style fits your taste)
Rated 2 out of 5 skulls Fair. (There is better metal out there)
< 2 skulls Pretty Bad. (Don't bother)