Like the band’s last album, 2007′s Given to the Rising, Neurosis’s 10th studio album in 27 years, Honor Found in Decay, is a cinematic, multi-dimensional exploration of texture and emotion that weaves together doom-metal, atmospheric rock, dark psychedelia, tribal metal and proto-industrial. But the experimental post-metal pioneers also delve deep into the apocalyptic folk that frontmen Scott Kelly and Steve Von Till have explored on their recent solo albums. “At the Well” starts with slow, reverberant guitar strums and cryptic existential musings: “The blaze of a Helios sky/ Rage will blossom into iron/Blind as a worm in the earth.” And “Casting of the Ages” opens with dual acoustic guitars and deep, rattling vocals atop a lolling bass line and a lazy accordion before sparking into a thudding, trudging doom trek.
Honor Found in Decay is hardly uplifting; here’s the opening line from the propulsive opening track”We All Rage in Gold”: “I walk into the water to wash the blood from my feet.” Yet the bands presentation is so artful and symphonic it reveals sheer beauty in lyrical hopelessness and inspiration in rhythmic ugliness. Unlike many post-metal albums that seesaw between reflective calm and turbulent chaos, Neurosis’s dualism is more subtle and natural, and at times almost spiritual in its nihilism.