The Ithaca-based doom folk collective Timber Rattle’s self titled cassette is dark, hypnotic, and apocalyptic. Constructed upon the simple combination of acoustic guitar, synth drones, and pastoral vocal layers, it’s an album that reaches something far beyond its humble beginnings. Timber Rattle is definitely repetitive, but not to a fault; instead, the focus on atmosphere rather than significant progression induces an almost trance-like state. The lyrics are unintelligible for the most part, but according to the band they are written about “land and bodies and life and death and magic and language and ritual and myth and space and cycles and animals and plants and food and poison,” a range of subjects that mirrors the music’s raw, primal nature (interview w/ Potlista). And even if the lyrics are hard to make out, the vocals possess incredible power just from their deep, primordial sonority. Yes, there is a clear oppressiveness in this music, but it’s somehow soothing, and seems to celebrate the unspoken energy contained in the things we cannot control.
Join me in seeing the band live, along with DREKKA and Dr. Zapata, at the Fuse Factory this Saturday (link to event).