Sinking Suns Sonic Blast

Death Songs

Sinking Suns

Independent Release, 2016

Primitive and moving with an animal instinct, the Sinking Suns skulk warily through familiar territory, bristling with sinking-suns-cvran nervous unease. Prowling and staying on the defensive at the same time. This recording is feral.

Sinking Suns, from Madison, Wisconsin, have managed to tap into that magical place where noise and melody manage to collide and somehow avoid being either one, exactly. Noisy bands often forgo any sense of musicality in strict favor of chaos. And there’s more than enough bands focused on pretty melodies. Sinking Suns manage to walk this tightrope with ease.

Singer Dennis Ponozzo, at the end of his manic, howled lines, occasionally sounds like he’s channeling Gibby Haynes. The guitars are filthy. Gritty and soot covered, they favoring longer, fluid lyrical lines, revealing a poetic side one wouldn’t readily expect. The bass is throbbing and drumming uncluttered, focused always on the songs.

“Death Song” is an anguished whirlwind of sound. Frustration and anger filtered through distortion.

“The Pit”stumbles to life, like some new beast learning how to walk; or a drunk trying to keep his footing, but dogged and determined nonetheless. The bass and drums carry this monster forward.

Post punk, but only barely, this is album is one long tear. The way a great Neil Young album only ever really shifts gear slightly between numbers, this is nine comparable musical musings. They’ve unearthed what came before them, scrawled a Sinking Suns tag on it, called it their own, and it’d be hard to argue it isn’t, exactly.

The disc closes with “The Escape.” The song careens headlong, pushing as if to build enough speed to burst out of some personal torment, if only to be able to breathe freely for the first time in a long time.

This is what new life sounds like. Beautifully chaotic, soiled, covered in muck, terrified and hopeful all at once. Coming into existence by sheer will will alone, and nothing more.