daygraves - Imperishable

03 Nov 2021 - Pat O'

Post-Black/Blackgaze/Post-Rock | ghostriot records | Release date: 14 Oct 2021

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Flowers arrive to us all today in the form of daygraves latest EP Imperishable. These white lilies perfectly echo the seniment found within this release. It’s a contrast of darkness and light, a “post-black” journey that transcends into moments of “post-rock” bliss

White Lilies are a flower that symbolise many different things. Often chosen for both celebrations and funerals, white lilies symbolise a rejuvenation of the soul. They represent purity, commitment and rebirth, which is why they’re often chosen as sympathy flowers. daygraves latest EP Imperishable depicts a bouquet of white lilies against a flat black backdrop. On hearing Imperishable, you will quickly see why the lily becomes so befitting. The bleak, but deeply charged music, along with the diverse vocal styles lend themselves to such a flower. However not everything is so black and white. This one-man project from Austin, Texas chose to write this music during a difficult time in his life, dealing with illness and hospitalisation. What appears to be dark and sombre from the outside is very different from what’s inside Travis’s mind. These lilies represent a more positive and uplifting outlook. A belief that things will improve and get better. Whichever way you view this EP personally, there’s no denying the talent. Just sit back and listen to Imperishable and enjoy the moment you have given yourself.

White Lilies are a flower that symbolise many different things. Often chosen for both celebrations and funerals, white lilies symbolise a rejuvenation of the soul. They represent purity, commitment and rebirth, which is why they’re often chosen as sympathy flowers. Daygraves’ latest EP Imperishable depicts a bouquet of white lilies against a flat black backdrop and on hearing it, you will quickly see why the lily becomes so befitting. The bleak, but deeply charged music, along with the diverse vocal styles lend themselves to such a flower. However not everything is so black and white. This one-man project from Austin, Texas chose to write this music during a difficult time in his life, dealing with illness and hospitalisation. What appears to be dark and sombre from the outside is very different from what’s inside Travis’s mind. These lilies represent a more positive and uplifting outlook. A belief that things will improve and get better. Whichever way you view this EP personally, there’s no denying the talent. Just sit back and listen to Imperishable and enjoy the moment you have given yourself.

This emotionally charged EP opens with soft and sombre guitar strings, gently pulled and drawn on the fretboard creating a beautifully ambient and calm atmosphere. “Desert Dust’s”‘wistful presence is heightened by a second guitar that gently whistles harmoniously above that gentle riff. Even when the heavier gaze-like electric guitars make their entrance, the momentum and feeling of peace and rest isn’t disturbed. All this beauty and imagery is soon joined by some hauntingly lush, velvet vocals that lament and serenade while being overlooked by a distant whisper. In stark contrast, this heart-breaking melody is soon shredded by a rasping deathly scream that turns day to night, with its dark rumblings and sinister delivery. Even still, its bleak and menacing screams aren’t enough to shatter the still. The atmosphere and ambiance of the track remains true.

“The Loneliest Liturgy” is a very different track and opens in a blast beaten whirlwind of crashing cymbals and trashing snares. Violent screams and driven riffs lead the assault of this “post-black” apocalypse. It’s wild and it’s potent. A momentary lull in chaos gives way to a promise of light and release, but once more the storm rages on with ferocity and unyielding destruction. The music continues to lament and ache as any great “blackgaze” track should. Closure is brought only by a sombre piano that fades out in utter exhaustion.

The title track “Imperishable” is a short musical wall of distorted and muffled guitars driving a dark yet soul-stirring melody. Synthesised keys pop and burst over a sea of turmoil that’s bonded by deep, pounding drums. It’s almost like a battle hymn that resounds over blood drenched fields that go on for miles, reeking of smoke, fire and loss, and just as the track title Imperishable suggests, it leaves a vivid and unforgettable scar across the vast, decaying terrain.

“Less Human” continues the theme of all that went before it, feeding off deep melancholia and endless sorrow, with moments of reflection and light scattered throughout. After a soothing and sombre intro, the track opens itself up to a swarm of guitars and drums all being fed off a visceral and tortured vocal onslaught. Call this “blackgaze”, “doomgaze”, “post black”, whatever you like, but the intensity in the heavier sections with its screams of anguish and then the subtlety in the softer moments, accompanied by those rich, velvet vocals, are a beautiful contrast. Like the black and white of the album cover, these polar opposites can become something beautiful when brought together.

Imperishable is a personal record for Travis and daygraves. For him, it’s a voyage into the realms of both darkness and light. For the rest of us it’s a gorgeous slab of “post-black” brilliance. Music can be a very personal thing, so take what you want from this album, but one thing is for sure though, it deserves to be heard.