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Lesbian: Forestelevision

Album Review

Seattle psychonauts channel the musical multiverse

Lesbian, the arbitrarily named Seattle quartet fronted by the bassist from veteran crossover pioneers The Accused, have released a couple of decent LPs in a Neurosis/Isis vein since 2007, but their third album – a single 44-minute track – hoists them into a weirder and more wonderful world of their own.

In many ways, Forestelevision feels like an extreme metal version of Mike Oldfield’s rustic, labyrinthine mid-70s mood pieces – meandering and building, ebbing and flowing, leading the stoned and headphoned listener on a sprawling sonic odyssey. In the case of Forestelevision, we’re escorted through passages of opiated, dissonant post-rock languor into a raft of choppy sludge-death riffing and esoteric-flavoured psych-doom and across a windswept, black-metal expanse, shot through with audacious and anarchic prog tendencies. 

Often these kind of multi-stylistic epics risk sounding turgid and pompous, but Lesbian have harnessed a free-ranging eccentricity, juxtapositional nous and restless momentum that keep the listener engaged. And the ante is upped in the 35th minute when, quite unexpectedly, King Diamond seems to show up.

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