Dirty Impound Questionnaire

Kylesa

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Kylesa

Kylesa

Ultraviolet light is invisible to normal human sight, but it’s there all the same, radiation we feel in our roasting flesh and a revealer of hidden things when we power up special lamps. It’s a fitting metaphor for the sixth album from Savannah, GA’s Kylesa, who’ve forged an album in Ultraviolet (released May 28 on Season of Mist) that grapples with layered complexities – musical, societal, personal and otherwise. This set explodes the dumb “sludge metal” tag that’s hung around Kylesa for too long with a commanding, totally diverse array of hard rock and metal strains poured into the band’s unique mold.

Ultraviolet confirms this band’s place in the progressive-mimded rock realm alongside kindred spirits Mastodon and Baroness, though Kylesa feels a good deal more old school in a way Sabbath and Motorhead fans might vibe with, a primal kinship with the genre’s foundational figures that also neatly plucks from vibrant psychedelia, heavy atmospherics akin to Pelican, and even Pink Floyd-ian melodic growl (Drifting) and Check Your Head-era Beastie Boys-esque pummel (Exhale, We’re Taking This). The combination is heady and engulfs one beautifully, a sustained but varied spell that’s full incantation takes time to emerge.

ultraviolet-cover

With two skilled singer-guitarists in Phillip Cope and Laura Pleasants riding the steadfast, gut level drumming of Carl McGinley, the album sweeps one up in a flowing way, the whispers and cries gaining full body over time, the depths and darkness of this song cycle clear only if one lives with it attentively for a peace. But there’s also the option of just riding its undulating, crunching waves of sound because Ultraviolet, produced by Cope, is a speaker rattling pleasure all by itself without all the semiotic spelunking (check out haunting mood poem “Unspoken” and its way cool animated video below to see what we mean – embrace the swirling throb, children).

Phillip Cope was nice enough to tackle DI’s signature questionnaire.

Name: Phillip Cope
Instrument(s) of choice: Guitar and Theremin
Nicknames: Dr. Phil

1. Great music rarely happens without…
Arguments
2. The first album I bought was…
The Sex Pistols’ Never Mind The Bollocks
3. The last song or album to really flip my wig was…
Goat’s World Music
4. When I was a kid I wanted to grow up to be…
A musician.
5. My favorite sort of gig is…
Where the crowd is enthusiastic.
6. One thing I wish people knew about me is…
Nothing.
7. I love the sound of…
Heavy guitars.
8. One day I hope to make an album as fantastic as…
Dinosaur Jr.’s Bug.
9. The best meal I ever had on tour was at…
A venue in Germany.
10. I always find the coolest audiences in…
Eastern Europe.
11. The worst habit I’ve picked up being on the road all the time is…
Smoking too much.
12. Led Zeppelin or Radiohead, which flips your switch the most and why?
Led Zeppelin because of the great, timeless songs.
13. The craziest thing I ever saw was…
Too crazy to actually talk about.