Published Jan 17, 2014Throughout their career Alcest have expertly balanced their sound between black metal and shoegaze, but with the release of their latest album Shelter, they're tipping the scales in favour of the latter. As the title suggests, the album explores the concept of shelter, which for Alcest's mastermind Neige is the serenity he experiences being close to the sea.
With the help of Sigur Rós producer Birgir Jón Birgisson, the music expertly mimics that safe and uplifting feeling with cascading melodies and a very airy yet expansive sound throughout. Birgisson also influenced the arrangements heard on Shelter, with keys, horns and strings figuring much more prominently in this material than ever before. For longtime fans, Shelter will sound like a major departure for the group, but Neige's ear for strong, enthralling songwriting remains unchanged. Though Alcest have left the majority of their metal signifiers behind, they've discovered another kind of heaviness via gorgeous, shimmering melodies.
Read our new interview with Alcest here.