One of the best unknown modern gems of Europe, the Oslo-based prog-rock outlet Delvoid rises from Oslo with its genre-bending, unpretentious discography. Carrying the long-lost uplifting spirit of The Mars Volta, they have certainly distinguished themselves from the modern djenty prog scene– which is currently drowning in its own uninspiredness. Although their sound evolved throughout the 12 years that they have been around, their music just got better with all of the influences that they absorbed. According to the bandmates, they ”chase the same white whale as Tool, Motorpsycho, and Sigur Ros but add their own flavor of psychedelia and minimalism to the hunt”. Although the minimalistic approach is apparent in their earlier works, 11’s Delve and 15’s Serene, their new 10-minute single ‘Collapsist’’ offers an experience that enhances their musical identity.
The syncopated guitar intro is just a part of their musical tactics, using it in many of their songs. However, the romantic 3/4 swing with acoustic guitar indicates the new direction that they are headed. The 3 chord pattern ends with a short intersection of the melodic guitar riff. The verse directs the attention to the vocalist Alex Delver’s double-tracked vocals, sung on the swingy melancholic background that we are used to hearing from Delvoid. Halfway through the song, the band proves that they have mastered the art of dynamic arrangement of composing/producing. The flow between different sections is really smooth, along with the balance that they have achieved between these different sections. This is obviously a result of great composition, but if we had to separate the pieces that make up this song great we would have to mention certain things:
1)The thoroughly incredible drumming by Esper Granseth: toe’s ”the book about my idle plot on a vague anxiety” was the last album that I had the honor of hearing this kind of flowing and natural-sounding drum performance. Incredible production, combined with the dynamic playing of Esper, who used different rhythmic textures in each section and adjusts the volume of his playing accordingly, truly led this song throughout.
2) Ethereal atmospheric layerings and Toolian riffs of Magnus and Erik: The way that they arranged the chords, chose certain melodies, created little riff runs to establish meaningful transitions, layered guitars on one another, and wrote tasteful distorted riffs are just remarkably beautiful. Although they set the tone for the song, they left enough amount of space for Alex Delver’s expressive vocal performance that steals the show.
Although Alex has lots of colors in his palette, his vocals on the uplifting choruses are certainly reminiscent of the great Cedric Zavala. Alex totally changes his approach in the second half of the song—where the band also completely creates a different atmosphere. It is one of the most beautiful outros that I’ve heard this year. The embracement of northern(Sigur Ros, etc.) influences are wonderful and satisfactory— but also this shows that Delvoid is much more musically refined and developed. A well-deserved eternal finally for such an accomplished song that you will lose yourself into the song.
All in all, we have a song that is made up of intricate rhythms, well-thought composition, world-class production, and tasteful melodies. Eyes on their summer release.