Australian blackened sludge band Lo! share new single and music video »Rat King« taken from their forthcoming album »The Gleaners«
Australian blackened sludge band Lo! has released new single and music video »Rat King« taken from their forthcoming album, »The Gleaners«, due out on April 7th, 2023 via Pelagic Records.
Directed, designed and animated by Carl Whitbread.
01. Our Fouling Larder
02. Salting The Earth
03. Deafening Bleats Of Apathy
04. Rat King
05. The Gleaners
08. Cannibal Culture
09. Mammons Horn
Courtesy of Push Media Promotion:
Lo! share new song + video for »Rat King« from the upcoming album »The Gleaners« (out April 7 via Pelagic Records)
“»Rat King« excels as a demonstration of Lo!’s capabilities all the way from their nuanced blackened hardcore-esque grinding to their post-metal leanings and malevolent sludge breakdowns.” — Everything Is Noise
A »Rat King« is a rare monster created by nesting rats that through crammed and overpopulated conditions become entangled in their own tails, slowly starving to death unable to free themselves or work together to survive.
Traditionally seen as a poignant symbol for greed, plague and societal disease. “Consumption as a saviour” complex makes us all rat kings, bound together in greed. We have eaten beyond our means and we lust for more through capitalism and refusal to stop a feast that is coming to an end. One of the album’s core characters is given its dues.
Stylistically the idea was to give the animation a hand drawn and gritty look, whilst keeping it simple and striking. This was achieved through a variety of rotoscoping techniques over stock video, animated elements and footage of Sam singing.
On »The Gleaners« Lo! firmly continue in the vein of their much-lauded third album, setting an over-arching storyline with multiple characters to a symphony of sonic death and destruction. “»Vestigial« opened up the writing arena for Lo! in many ways,” explains guitarist and main-songwriter Carl Whitbread about the predecessor of »The Gleaners«. “We created an album of anthems without losing the groove or viciousness of performing live, using defined characters and themes that are revisited and interwoven across the record, while also experimenting with atmospheric and cinematic samples to breathe life into the recording.”
“The act of gleaning was a medieval practice where a lord or nobility would allow their lowest subjects to sift through the refuse of a newly harvested field for subsistence,” continues Whitbread. “Replace grain with truth and we ourselves are gleaning daily through media, relationships and our own myths to subside; hoping to harvest sense from the muck and mire.” »The Gleaners« is a literal ‘apokálupsis‘, a revelation, in the sense that it presents a firm wake-up call to those who have gotten too comfortable in life. It tells a story where capitalism, colonialism, privilege, and wholesale apathy all get their dues.
From afar, »The Gleaners« would seem like a fair breeding ground for conspiracists, and it does make a grander scheme of things seem plausible, both for sceptics as well as free thinkers. However, don’t be deceived! At the base of »The Gleaners« lies a hardcore search for freedom and truth that leaves nothing to the imagination. From the one-two punch of album opener »Our Fouling Larder« and »Salting The Earth« to the d-beat destruction of »Rat King« and the massive culmination of »Cannibal Culture«, Lo! leave you little opportunity to catch your breath. Even the more atmospheric tracks like »Pareidolia« or the title track feel crushingly heavy not despite but because of their slower pace.
Above all, this record is nothing but a frm rattling of your cage – and who could expect something else from the minds of this Australian quartet who have been churning out nothing but stellar sludgy blackened hardcore over the past twelve years? Like a Hieronymus Bosch painting, the storyline of The Gleaners has little of a focal point, the characters crawl all over the place – its chaos is complete – but somehow its impact is phenomenal. Lo! have gone and done it again, creating a terrifying vision of the infernal madness of our reality that shakes you to your core!
Carl Whitbread – Guitar
Sam Dillon – Vocals
Adrian Griffin – Drums
Adrian Shapiro – Bass, Backing Vocals
Bojan Bidovc // music enthusiast, promoter, misanthrop and sometimes a journalist as well