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KANAAN - Earthbound

Fuuuuck, this shit is heavy!

KANAAN - Earthbound (LP) (2021)

The first ninety-five seconds of "Earthbound" are so clean and peaceful. If you told me that this album's aethereal jazz-fusiony "Prelude" belonged to some unreleased Cynic material, I would very likely believe it.

But after that for most of the following seven tracks except the breather "Mirage" Kanaan jump on The Midnight Ghost Train and fuzz your freaking face off!
I guess it's established by now that the Norwegian instrumental trio likes to switch up things a little with every album, so of course you already expected some stylistic shift, but this relentless distortion and heaviness still comes as a surprise. And it's a very pleasant one.

If you want to put a label on it, the first thing that come to mind for this album are stoner rock or heavy psych, but the real kicker is that all the filigreed jazzy virtuosity and flow, all the untiring drum energy are of course still there. They are just whirling around while simultanously being shoveled up with this almost obscenely thick layer of gnarly bass guitar sludge. It's delicious!

Kanaan's sound on "Earthbound" seems to be optimized for super heavy and primitive doom metal. If anyone doubts that, they are proving it with the slow "Crash" which rivals the likes of Conan and Monolord. But they also use this very same sound for their typical fusion shenanigans, which makes it sound like The Heads were on a Mahavishnu Orchestra trip. It's a quite unique brand of bonkers. And it's also just damn good.

Can't wait to see if Kanaan will still be in this mode or in some entirely new place, when I'll see them live the next time. Which will hopefully be at the next Roadburn Festival. If if if you know and all, of course... fingers crossed!  

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