Jarboe - The Reykjavik Grapevine

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Jarboe

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Published May 8, 2009

Jarboe’s magnificent Hindu-apocalyptic concept album Mahakali is nothing short of spectacular in its gloom, hopelessness, and sense of impending insanity; although it could have used a little more adventurousness, it is no less a fitting product of the sound she has been slowly evolving for the last twenty years. Due to her status as an ex-member of the Swans, she has enjoyed the liberty of picking anyone from underground noise and metal to work with, and this album is no exception. However, the guests fail to  live up to the succubal screams and satanic whispers of Jarboe herself, and it would seem that Jarboe has finally escaped her status as simply a spin-off of Swans and has established herself as a brilliant sonic landscaper in her own right—a title she has earned over a score of fascinating albums.

  • Verdict: The brilliant culmination of two decades of doom and ambient sound-sculpting, although a bit pedestrian at times.
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