5/3/17 – Boris “Flood” (2000)

Boris an Japanese Experimental group that have produced quite a cult following throughout their prolific career. They are an absolute fascination to follow album to album, because they change ideas so frequently. Flood is a single stretch of music, split up into 4 parts. The first half of the album is very much in the vein of Post-Rock, beautiful melodies and drawn out playing. The second half of the album is much more Metal and Sludge inspired. Both halves are very atmospheric and entrancing.

Part I is a guitar riff played over and over with an echo changing the delay very slightly on ever repeat. It’s such a simple idea but it makes for a hypnotic song piece that your brain tries desperately to identify new tones and melodies in the chaos of the notes. Distant thunderstorms of drums are the bridge into Part II. For how loud of a sound this is, it’s quite relaxing. When the storm of ambient noise takes over there are little droplets of drum hits that give off a rainy mood. Part II is slow and dreamy, I really love how it builds on itself, and never sits too still even moving at a snail’s pace. The guitar tones here are perfectly soft and chilled out, I find it really hard not to close my eyes and drift away. Every time I think I have a grasp on what the song is, a curve ball of a new guitar solo is introduced, like a gift that keeps on giving.

Part III contines the relaxing guitar into the lyrics (not 100% sure on translation):
“The judged quiet earth
From a crack in the heavy clouds
The light shines and wraps around
As it simply continues to flow
And pours into the curved seashore
Overflowing light
Wraps around
A rainbow spans the vast water
Beyond that, a new sky commences”

The abstract lyrics fit the album well, if it had a more straightforward narrative to it, I think the album would be a lot worse off. This is then when the album takes a sharp turn into Sludge Metal. As gritty as this gets, it’s just as beautiful to me as Part II. And instead of the electric guitar on Part II, a bass guitar on Part IV is it’s mirror. This uses echo as much as Part I, filling the air with just one note that seems to echo forever. This is the most ambient the album has been so far, and it’s lovely and strange. The storm of noise slowly dies, fading away over 20 minutes in length. This album is absolutely fantastic, opening itself up to endless repeated listens.