When an outlet as stale as Pitchfork brilliantly labels you “militantly adventurous heavy metal” you must be doing something right. And The Atlas Moth from Chicago absolutely are doing something right.
The first time I heard their 2018 album, ‘Coma Noir’, it just clicked. This is, on a base level, post metal. Very, very well done post metal. But there’s so much more in the mix here. Touches of black metal, synths, clear blackgaze parallels, and just and overwhelmingly grand atmosphere. Big, gut -punch riffs back a relentless vocal performance from Stavros Giannopoulos.
With alternating vocal styles and shifting levels of aggression in the music, The Atlas Moth manage to offer a surprising level of variety in their sound. Often with post/sludge style metal there’s a risk of things blurring together – it’s all aggressive monotone vocals and crushing riffs. But The Atlas Moth never once fall into that trap.
That sound has become more polished with each album, but that dynamic has been consistent. It’s been a few years since we’ve had new music from them, but I’m excited for what they do next.