Scott Kelly and the Road Home – The Forgiven Ghost in Me
Given the steady incorporation of folk elements into his main band's palette, as well as that of side project Blood and Time, Scott Kelly's solemn, apocalyptic meditations on his solo records aren't a wholly recent venture; it's more that the Neurosis founder's more subtle influences are given their own dedicated space to breathe here. Joined here by Greg Dale (Christ on Parade) and Neurosis bandmate Noah Landis, this is startlingly sparse music.
Layering is kept to a minimum, with acoustic guitar and Kelly's unmistakeable gravelly voice as the primary weapons, but there's always a prevailing sense of foreboding even when the intensity isn't at a high. When it is, the effects are heavy, though not in the traditional sense; The Field That Surrounds Me is probably the most intense track here, its brooding guitar tones and shimmering cymbals scrape away at the psyche. To see Kelly mellow out in this way might not be to the taste of all fans, but it's a worthwhile trip.