7 Year Rabbit Cycle Ache Hornes

7 Year Rabbit Cycle is an elusive and extremely hushed indie super-group led by ex-Deerhoof guitarist Rob Fisk. For Ache Hornes, the group’s third full-length, Fisk has enrolled as solid a line-up as imaginable: one-time Deerhoof vocalist Kelly Goode (a 7 Year Rabbit Cycle mainstay), Xiu Xiu leader Jamie Stewart (previously only a guest, now a full-fledged member), and drummer extraordinaire Ches Smith (he’s played with the likes of John Zorn, Tom Waits and Fred Frith, to name but a few), not to mention able bassist Miya Osaki and exacting guitarist George Chen. For the most part, 7 Year Rabbit Cycle prefer to explore ideas of restrained tension and subtle interplay on Ache Hornes, rather than getting all unwieldy or unhinged, and it uses this approach to great effect, drawing the listener in with its soft elegance and charm, than tearing down the dams at just the right time, to let the pounding drums and guitar chops flow through, if only for a brief amount of time. This is post-rock taken to its most exacting and whittled-down extremes, and it’s tempestuous stuff that’s as demanding an experience as it is a fulfilling one. (Etude)