Mouth of the Architect The Ties That Bind

Turns out that Dayton, OH also has an affinity for Isis-inspired metal, namely Mouth of the Architect. After 2004’s debut Time & Withering and a split with neighbours Kenoma, the band lost two guitar players but recruited Botch/These Arms Are Snakes bassist Brian Cook for this recording session. With an average song length of 11 minutes, The Ties That Bind takes its time getting to its sonic destinations. Epic opener "Baobab” pushes the Isis envelope with thickly layered chords, but it’s "No One Wished to Settle Here” that really stretches the band’s prog tendencies: walking, Yes-like bass lines and extensive, Pink Floyd-ish riffage that even lean into Harvey Milk tacks at the five-minute and again five minutes later. "Carry On” continues said formula, lapsing into a mournful My Dying Bride passage halfway through, while "Harboring an Apparition” adds plaintive keys in a Paradise Lost-like wash. Mastodon’s Brent Hinds lays down guest screams on the Zombi-covers-Neurosis "At Arm’s Length.” The 13-minute closer,"Wake Me When It’s Over,” features left- and right-channel phasing with echoplex-laden chords, cascading drum fills, and Daylight Dies-styled progressions. The Ties That Bind picks up where Morgion’s swan song Cloaked by Ages, Crowned in Earth left off and expands its palette with bold brushstrokes that linger in the subconscious long after the album ends. (Translation Loss)