Nechochwen's previous record, 2010's Azimuths to the Otherworld, was one of the best records to come out that year, and it remains one of my all-time favorites, so once can easily imagine my excitement for this follow-up. Despite being a very short record (clocking in at just around 30 minutes), this album does not disappoint in the slightest. The band's sound hasn't significantly changed since Azimuths, but there's no need really to mess with something so close to perfection anyway. The Native American-influenced folk sections are as beautiful as ever, as the classical guitar playing that makes up the majority of Nechochwen's unique style is even more impressive than on previous recordings (no small feat, I assure you). The forays into extreme metal have a significantly more progressive edge to them this time around, and they make this album flow very, very well. The short length of the record makes me feel like this is just something to tide us over until the next record. That's pure speculation, and perhaps a wish as well. As much as I enjoy each of their releases, Nechochwen just keep me wanting more - to see where they'll go next, and to see where their music will take me next.
You can stream OtO from the Bindrune Recordings Bandcamp page, and buy the vinyl LP, available in 3 different packages, here. While you're there, you are also encouraged to pick up the latest album from the great Chet Scott's project Blood of the Black Owl. As always, the highest of quality, the utmost integrity, and a stunning atmosphere grace that album (titled Light the Fires), which I guarantee will not disappoint. One of the most intense albums I've heard all year.