Album of the Day: Thousand Foot Whale Claw, “Black Hole Party”

True to its title and Kilian Eng cover art, Black Hole Party finds members of Future Museums, Troller, S U R V I V E, and Single Lash embracing their extraterrestrial side at the edge of their own self-contained universe. And while the quartet is quick to credit krautrock as a main source of inspiration, there’s more to Thousand Foot Whale Claw’s second album than rickety Neu!-school rhythms, loose Manuel Göttsching licks, and tricked-out Tangerine Dream undertones. Between their deeply felt drones, wailing guitar work, and traces of ambient techno, it’s as if the Austin band (and producer/recurring collaborator Dylan Cameron) set out to summarize Holodeck‘s entire sound with six expansive songs.

The riff-centric ragas of “Genesis Effect” and the slow-built opening scene of “No Kingdom,” set off a dive straight into the deep end, and stargazing set pieces like “Naiad” and “Double Abyss” expand eternally outward, gaining texture and breadth as they go on. The space cadets behind all these instrumentals (Justin Goers, Adam Jones, Zac Roesch, and Neil Lord) are clearly capable, and Black Hole Party is a dizzying journey to the other side.

-Andrew Parks

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