"With Hyperborean, Eugene, Oregon post rockers, Paleons, capture the almost sacred exaltation of sunshine bursting free over a mysterious, wooded hillside in the Pacific Northwest. Both dark and ebullient, casting pale sunbeams into the dark corners of instrumental rock, metal, noise and sublime consciousness." -- William Kennedy, Eugene Weekly
There’s a very specific cross-section of post-rock, stoner rock and progressive rock in which exist bands like The Samsara Blues Experiment or Tumbleweed Dealer. It’s a section of music which draws on mid-era Pink Floyd for much of its characteristics and overall vibe but further complicates the influence by going deeper, louder and fuzzier on the more “out there” segments while also infusing them with a healthy dose of fuzz. Paleons is a really good example of the type of groovy grandeur the style can accomplish and, this being their third release, have managed to break out of the mold the very specific style commands.
Hyperborean, released in February of this year, marks a great step forward for them. The album’s first pillar for this momentum is the shorter, more groovier tracks like opener “Moon Dragon”. These really on fuzzy guitar leads backed by robust bass, overall drawing the song structure from the more accessible and less cinematic elements of post-rock, like Tumbleweed Dealer mentioned above or In Each Hand A Cutlass. The tracks are varied enough to create a sense of direction and a unique style without shattering too many dimensions of what they’re expected to do.
However, the band also depart from this blueprint several times on the album, in two main ways. The first one involves diving a bit deeper into the doom influences replete throughout the album and blending them with a very space-y and far flung sound. “The Circle and Eternity” which immediately follows the opening track clocks in at more than twelve minutes and contains some of the most impressive moments of the album; its persistent and evocative bass lines and reoccuring themes, given plenty of time to reach fruition throughout its run-time, make it an excellent astral journey.
The other element, the third one if you’re counting, is what ties a bow around the whole thing. The previous two elements cited are excellent but they alone wouldn’t have been enough to life Hyperborean above the masses. What does that is the excellent use of brass instruments and strings, especially near the end of the album. Tracks like “The Tree of Pansophia” or “Andromeda, the Tomb of the Sun” have some really original and well recorded usage of both strings and horns, used both to add an more edge to the composition (in the case of the former) or to evoke longing and sorrow (as in the latter, although the horns near the middle are once again brilliantly used for edge and punch).
These three elements combined set Hyperborean is one of the best releases I’ve had the pleasure of listening to within this sub-genre. Take that together with great track names, compelling cover art and an overall sense of cohesion and purpose and you get yourself one hell of a release, both groovy, evocative and imaginative.
Eugene, Oregon’s PALEONS have always been enigmatic songwriters. Their albums range from sci-fi inspired, proggy space rock to ethereal, atmospheric psychedelia. The new album, ‘Hyperborean’ (2017) is definitely an animal of another kind, though. The layers of complexity and range of tonal pigments Paleons manages here are downright impressive and must have stretched each band member considerably.
Quiet, contemplative themes develop into striking crescendos of color, something that’s immediately apparent in album opener, “Moon Dragon.” The machine-like rhythms of “The Circle and Eternity” felt entirely space-age, and could perhaps work for an alternate soundtrack to those surreal moments in the final act of 2001: A Space Odyssey. Listening to “The Tree of Pansophia,” I feel quite like an astronaut drifting off into the vast reaches of outer (or perhaps inner) space, where all that surrounds me is mysterious and grand in proportions that defy the mind’s ability to comprehend.
I asked the band for insight into the new album. “In Greek mythology, Hyperboreans were people who lived in the far North,” guitarist Mark Leahey tells me. “The sun always shined and they never died. I think I took that idea and it inspired the artwork of the post-apocalyptic Martian explorer princess of the cover. The song titles are her search for esoteric knowledge in a foreign wasteland.”
For me, tracks such as “Andromeda, the Tomb of the Sun,” “Wheel of Anguish,” and “Urizen” embody these concepts completely. They are buyout and teeming with life, a vast ocean of alien creatures.
As I’ve remarked in my reviews of Clouds Taste Satanic, Troll, and other instrumental or quasi-instrumental albums, it’s quite difficult to tells stories without vocals to give us lyrical hints about a song’s direction. Few bands can pull it off convincingly. Paleons, however, really sells us on the idea. Indeed, the human voice might spoil the misty serenity and starlit brilliance of songs like “Quicksilver Snake” and “Sun at the Eastern Gate.”
Looking for points of comparison, I’m drawn to both the space rock tangents of Hawkwind, the psychedelic heaviness of Eternal Riffian, and the post rock sensibilities of Isis, Pelican, and fellow Eugenians, Ninth Moon Black. Yet none of these alone can convey the depth of feeling, breadth of musicianship, and sheer scope of imagination we’re hearing on Hyperborean. Enthusiastically recommended.
Hyperborean is an album by American post rock group Paleons, from Eugene, Oregon. Released on February 3, the full length is fifty one minutes long, and has eight tracks: Moon Dragon, The Circle and Eternity, Wheel of Anguish, Sun at the Eastern Gate, The Tree of Pansophia, Andromeda, the Tomb of the Sun, Urizen and Quicksilver Snake. A modern post rock infused with stoner and psychedelic elements, Hyperborean is an album with vibrating and eccentric melodies, that strongly resembles in some passages the psychedelic rock of the seventies, although the record strongly maintains the quintessential elements of post rock. With an interesting vibe and a formidable display of harmonies, departing from a major convergence of methodically aligned symphonies, Hyperborean is a sonorous lucid dream, painted in the skylight of a surreal soundscape, in a realm configured to vividly feel the soul of an alarming universe, with colliding vicissitudes astoundingly performing in a musical dimension where all sensibilities were sold to a higher and protuberating force of effective musical abilities and original creative devices, so to speak.
With calm, but eviscerating harmonies, Hyperborean is a major work, primarily grounded in a very methodic synergy, that easily foretells the insinuating abilities of a captivating and genuine style, that subtlety inserts on its overall sound dimensions very discreet big band grooves, amalgamating whispering tonalities of sound, that surprisingly eludes to a different universe of ambivalent rejuvenating artistry.
A different record, interesting to hear, Hyperborean is an album full of soul and consistency, that perfectly matches a refined touch of intense sensibility, with a grounded desire for proficient and competent technicality. Beautiful harmonies are a primary characteristic of the album, that standardizes in the horizontal patterns of continuous slow melodies an efficient style, splendidly proverbial, and anatomically dense, that makes the music merge directly into your soul and into your bones, never leaving your senses unnoticed, and aligning your sensitivities to the colorful vibrations of a world unseen.
Hyperborean is a very categorical, intense and creative work, that turns in the headlines of its explicit ordeal the nature of a sonorous anagram, whose marvelous artistry elaborates, note by note, the pragmatic cohesion of a universe never properly understood. A different album, with an original proposal, Hyperborean is a wonderful match of a versatile type of post rock, aligned with more vibrant psychedelic colors and tons, without deviating from its surprisingly well-balanced directive style. With vivacious grooves and a serene antagonistic path towards the spiritual mindfulness of its own essence, Hyperborean is a dream-like album, with a rainbow of stars highlighting the way of its supreme magnificence. In such a way that the listener, one way or another, will be exceedingly astounded, as soon he opens his perceptions to it!
From the Greek music blog translated to English:
About five years ago formed in Oregon are highly talented Paleons, composed by Mark Leahey on guitar, Chris Ruiz on keyboards, the Brian McDermott on bass, the Tim Mansell on drums and Meg Graham violinist who early this month released the new and third in total full length work.
Eight pieces of a total duration of 51 minutes contains about nd why Hyperborean, which is flanked by a dull and very fitting with the air of rock music artwork and distinguished by impeccable production, which by its organic clarity flatter new compositions of exceptional Paleons and generally adventurous sound.
Drips perfume indie and light noise fragrance harmony concealed peaceful post rock timbres of Paleons in their new essay, which fantastically combined with almost imperceptibly stoner nuggets and weak prog style with vibrant krautrock elements, exemplary highlighting the abysmal heavy psych beauty Hyperborean.
Sufficiently heavy riffs sometimes with faint stoner mood, sometimes with indie shades constantly weaves guitar in Hyperborean, which decorates with strong post rock and anemic noise soundscapes thanks to intoxicating the leads and solos, while combined with the fragile violin and mesta keys embellishes with krautrock temperamental space touches the sound of Paleons.
Robust is rugged and soaked with faint fuzz opium bass of Paleons their new album and particularly dynamically their compact drums, which harmoniously sprinkle with groove sparks the exclusively instrumental texture post rock character hearty Hyperborean and thus highlight perfectly the space aura heavy psych status.
Perhaps it is still too early to draw conclusions but I suppose that the ascending our Paleons gave one of the most delightful and beautiful year trays as our heady Hyperborean travels almost unbearable beauty post rock oceans and unparalleled krautrock soundscapes kaleidoscopic heavy psych charm . Spectacular.
This is a translation from Polish website: Masterful Magazine
PALEONS. The American comic of Oregon plays, according to their own description, "Instrumental post rock, noise, krautrock, and psychedelia." This year's "Hyperborean" is their third album.
The description is in a way that is true, but not entirely true - two patches are really enough. Post rock and space rock.
Of course, mixing rock space and rock post is not quite so new, but in this case we are dealing with a very successful, homogeneous mix where both ingredients are sliced into a smooth and tasty mass. Sometimes shifts lean on the advantage of the first, sometimes the second, but the general proproesis is 50:50, which is a very good concept, because the dreamy, rock posters of the GODSPEED YOU! BLACK EMPEROR or MOGWAI give a huge space, and the harsh, rocking heat of HAWKWIND (Hall of the Mountain Grill) adds a claw and general fuck (here and even punk riffs are here and there). The whole has a good dynamics and beautifully flowing, it happens a lot, but it manages to keep a consistent atmosphere, signaled by the cover: a little nostalgic, a little raised, like an elegy in the extinct space race - but given different means. They are so atmospheric, composed of acoustical landscapes or more psychedelic bulbs made up of difficult to identify sounds, but there is often a mighty, tectonic cleavage with very hawkwind saxophone violinists and fragments of sharp, hardrock heat in the seventies spirit, which who likes. PALEONS in every edition offer a star-studded full of colors to the listener, although - as the cover emphasizes - everything is dimmed, as if some of the colored flecks of the fractal were overlapped with a dark filter that dimmed the whole.
I suspect that their characteristic sound is due to the fact that they have the violin and violin they are doing here as a full instrument, they are not just an add-on, but can be heard everywhere in very different configurations; Sometimes they sound ordinary, classic, and sometimes they are passed through different filters, which sound like I do not know what bubbling quantum foam or something like that.
There are also shovels, especially in those more postcondensing moments, tinged with excess of tenderness and dreamy, as if the team leaned slightly beyond the limit to which such games are allowed, but there is not much and I do not mind too much listening.
I buy it, great thing, found quite by chance in the depths of the Internet - I clicked spontaneously on the recommendations on youtube and went.