CD Review

Photo by Delilah Winter

Ben Chasny is a bit of an enigma. The man behind Six Organs of Admittance rarely steps out into the limelight: as guitar player for Bay Area mind-erasers Comets on Fire, he's usually in the shadows furiously firing away, and with Six Organs, he again lets his guitar playing do the talking. "Torn by Wolves" is the first track on The Sun Awakensand is some of his most beautiful and simple music to date. It's as if he's inviting you in with a lullaby—kinda creepy, actually. But the truth is that Chasny is a phenomenal guitar player, with either the finger-picked acoustic music that Six Organs is known for or the face-melting electric assault that has been the undoing of many an audience—not to mention a few guitars. The Sun Awakens employs much more of the latter as Chasny goes electric and adds Om bassist Al Cisneros on the 23-minute romp on "River of Transfiguration." For obscure rockos, the influences of Hapshash and the Coloured Coat and Popul Vuh find equal time on this record. In my personal record-dork opinion, this new disc pushes the envelope even further than 2005's School of Flower. Or maybe it's that I feel much more connected here—like Chasny's little pink baby as I listen. It must be the lullaby.

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