Mamaleek - Diner Coffee review
|Release date:||September 2022|
01. Libations To Sacred Clowns
02. Boiler Room
04. Save Your Poor Wicked Soul
05. Grief And A Headhunter's Rage
06. Wharf Rats In The Moonlight
07. Diner Coffee
I know we're stuck in the black lodge and all, but, excuse me, this is a damn fine cup of coffee!
Mamaleek is a very interesting beast, from the mysterious identity of the members (the kids in the profile photo are them, but that's the only one you'll find), to how they sit on the fringes of experimental music, once upon a time having been something you could theoretically call a metal band. When I reviewed 2020's Come & See, they had already established their left-field sound as something very odd yet uniquely theirs. Though they're not a metal band anymore, there's still so much dormant heaviness in their music, that I can see metal fans having an easier time getting into them than say jazz fans, though Mamaleek's bizarre nature is not making it easy for anyone to get into their music theoretically.
Aside from the heavy riffing and the gruff vocals that plant at least one of this beast's feet in metal territories, Diner Coffee uses dark jazz to create otherworldly and ominous atmospheres. There are a lot of descriptors that could be used for this that I've also used for this, but just like some other avant-garde counterpart, it managed to actually sound dreamlike and nightmarish in as much more than just sounding merely disturbing. That otherworldly sensation could indeed be either the dream world, or something much much more malevolent. The Twin Peaks reference in the cover art is hopefully more than just me reading too much into it, and as much as describing something as "Lynchian" could be eye-rolling, there's very little music out there which can hit that absurdly otherworldly tone, but Diner Coffee can.
Much more than just being surreal, Diner Coffee is very anxiety-inducing, from its dark jazz atmospheres, the muffled production, the noise rock injections, blues melodies, and the way it still manages to flow organically within its dreamlike atmosphere. Though the album is very short, barely over 35 minutes in runtime, and a lot of it is sitting within calmer territories, the listening experience is very unnerving, as if you had spent much more time with this album than you'd be comfortable with. It's not as disorienting as some of its similarly nightmarish peers, alternating the being-stuck-in-a-lobby with the dynamic-chase-scene type of nightmare. In the grander Mamaleek universe, it was a pretty tough challenge to out-weird themselves, but I think it worked out.
As if stuck between two worlds, with a chance out that a magician would long to see, one whose darkness of future past would require the walking companionship of fire. Or just a nice cup of coffee.
||Written on 08.10.2022 by|
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