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Hibagon | ‘Polyposmic’

I think we can imagine the sort of person who mainly listens to instrumental math rock.

And I think we can agree that this image is something that can often cloud the music that you’re attempting to review. It’s maybe not something I’m completely understanding of, but I’m reviewing it and need to take a stance on it without preconceptions bothering me.

Forming in 2011, Hibagon (taken from the Japanese equivalent of Bigfoot) are a two piece (guitar and drums) from Bergamo, Italy.

They describe themselves as channelling “…the energy of the straightforward guitar + drums formula into irregular textures, bringing it back to the listener in geometric and distorted frames.”

With previous EP’s being titled “Hibagon and the Quest for the Creature Previously Known as Moughra the Guardian”, it’s clear that there’s a certain element of humour in what they do.

But will this help or hinder ‘Polyposmic’?

‘120’ is a minute long intro, where loops and guitar noise create the feeling of being sucked into a portal. Acting nicely as a contrast for the first proper song, ‘Anacrosaurus’ thus throws the listener off by beginning at a more relaxed tempo. After 30 seconds, it speeds up and goes into gnarly and intricate riffage.

There’s bits of Mastodon and Swans in there, which make it an appealing combination. The guitar tone is warm and direct, while the drums have a satisfying wallop without overpowering.

‘Colugozer’ has a pounding, relentless drum riff reminiscent of Big Business and the Melvins. It’s a rocking number with some very intricate riffing, continued into the next song, ‘Hyphoyak.’

A lot of the songs follow the same pattern so, if you like what you read, then you know what to expect.

Credit has to be given for the cover. Simple enough to work well on a t-shirt, and with enough detail to withstand the scrutiny of it being blown up to 12′ size. It works both as a piece of sci fi, and a piece of surrealism.

This is a surprising, enjoyable and rocking album. What Hibagon have in their favour is that their songwriting manages to avoid the “wackiness” that can plague instrumental acts.

If they had a singer, then there’s a chance they’d have a higher profile than they currently have. But, as it stands, Hibagon are a band to watch out for.

Proof an open mind is always needed when reviewing.

3.5 / 5 – Christopher Owens ::: 11/06/17

One Comment
  1. I quite like that, unexpectedly.

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