The second album from California based doom/post-metallers Daxma is an intensely moving, transcendent listen. Using the works of 13th century Persian poet Rumi as inspiration for the album’s themes and structure, Daxma have created a deeply affecting and vast work of art that carries the listener on a journey to explore some of our most complex emotions; grief, hopelessness, resilience and hope.
Like all the finest post-metal and post-rock, the focus is on conveying and eliciting emotion rather than supplying instant hooks. The melodies here are subtle yet pervasive, weaving in and out of the band’s earth shattering and grandiose sound, of which Jessica T’s violin is a standout component, lending the songs an added haunting dimension. Thirteen minute opener ‘The Clouds Parted’ encompasses all that is wonderful about their sound; hauntingly melancholic melodies, a rich tapestry of instrumentation and an ability to reach right into your heart. Musically, Daxma sit somewhere between the pounding intensity of Isis and Amenra and the more ethereal, heartbreaking sounds of Sigur Ros and Godspeed You! Black Emperor, the latter of which can be heard in the gorgeous piano adorned ‘The Earth Swallowed Our Shadows’ and acoustic, lilting sections of ‘Saudade’.
On Unmarked Boxes Daxma have created a graceful, towering monolith of a record, one that is as intimate as it is imposing and palatial. On the strength of this record alone, they deserve to be talked about with the same reverence as the other post metal titans; with any luck, time will afford them such adulation.
Unmarked Boxes is out now via Blues Funeral and Majestic Mountain and can be purchased here.
Words: Adam Pegg