The Haxan Cloak – Excavation
The Haxan Cloak's self-titled 2011 album on Aurora Borealis brought Bobby Krlic, aka The Haxan Cloak, to the attention of the ultra-hip and experimental Tri Angle label. Krlic's atmospheric, cinematic productions are closely allied to acts like Demdike Stare or Raime, bringing to mind post-industrial landscapes; ruined cities, corpse-ridden battlefields, abandoned warehouses. A washed-out, funereal 2-step underpins Excavation Part 1, while the textured, Lovecraftian sub-bass squelches of Excavation Part 2 owe as much to dubstep dynamics as they do to ambient soundscaping.
Moments of Lynchian menace and domineering static build to the violin-inflected crescendo of The Mirroring Part 2; Dieu brings the rhythmic propulsion back for a syrupy slice of mutant electro, while magisterial 13-minute closer The Drop comes on like a lost Bladerunner-era Vangelis cut, vanishing into heavenly static. Reclaiming noise and dark ambient from lazy, one-note producers, The Haxan Cloak's crepuscular nightmare-scapes are hypnotic, compelling, and in their understated, minimalistic way, exquisitely beautiful; revelling in profound darkness. [Bram E. Gieben]