A bit late to the party with this one, but it’s another of my favourite finds of the year, so I wanted to share it. These are my thoughts on Casual Nun’s Psychometric Testing By…
To start with, these guys aren’t messing about. It’s straight to business with loud crashing drums, fast guitars and wailing vocals. Opener, Tusk, offers a short and sweet introductory burst of madness.
The pace drops significantly with Everyman’s Folly, and we are welcomed into Casual Nun’s crazy psychedelic world. Gradually, over time, we are teased through layers of thick, muddy guitar, into a whirlwind of intensity. Noise and effects come at every angle, and lyrics fly overhead, as we get lost in the the perfectly constructed chaos.
The first three minutes of Truth machines continue to hypnotise us through the album. The swirling guitars are then quickly taken over by unsettling whispers, over solemn music that gradually escalates into a sourly majestic configuration.
Xiphoid Revolution for me best encapsulates the whole basis of the album. It was recorded the same time as Super Fancy Skeleton, their last LP, and I think the jam esque quality, although definitely a theme throughout the entire album, really comes through for me here. The start is consistent, with more random elements, strength and vigour inserting itself in the second half. Just as you think it’s reached its peak towards the end, it hurtles an incline around the 8 minute mark to see the track out.
Stripes brings this fantastic album to a close. As otherworldly as the rest and more experimental than most, this unholy conclusion sees the album out with darkness. Words are spat through a demonic medium over trippy distortion. Whilst various elements of this track encapsulate the whole album to an extent, it simultaneously remains completely disparate, thus exemplifying Casual Nun’s brilliant and creative artistic mastery.