New Zealand-based post-metal collective Spook the Horses have unveiled their video for “Cell Death” from the band’s forthcoming new full-length, Empty Body, set for release on August 28.
Following the calm “People Used To Live Here”, Empty Body rears its head with distortion levels cranked up, tempos sped up, and songs condensed and stripped down to the bare, ugly essentials.
“We’ve always been both a heavy and a quiet band,” the group says.
“An entire album of our prettier, more bittersweet inclinations demands a reply of our most aggressive and confrontational.”
“The pendulum must swing back the other way,” multi-instrumentalist Callum Gay says.
“Our music videos have, until now, focused on the abstract and surreal, not wanting to insert ourselves into the conversation between sound, image, and the viewer.
“With Cell Death, coming from our most raw and transparent record yet, the band is out in full force.
“In this video, we bring an adaption of our live shows to the screen, projecting the energy and sensory overload we bring to the stage, while also respecting the artifice of video production.”
Imagine a band where members can rotate between instruments, because every band member can play every instrument – Spook the Horses are such a band.
And it is perhaps this multi-instrumentalism and virtuosity that explains the vast musical territory that is explored across the band’s four albums.
While 2011’s debut album “Brighter” was defined by sweet post-rock crescendos, 2015’s “Rainmaker” was a much heavier affair.
“People Used To Live Here” (2017) created an atmosphere of quiet desolation, raw and real, desperate and unsettling: the post-apocalyptic soundtrack to abandoned places, where people used to live, at one point in time, long ago.
“Since we started work on People Used To Live Here years ago we knew the album would need a follow-up that was radically different – almost spitefully different – if only to utterly refuse any trite suggestion that we might be “maturing” or mellowing out with time,” Gay says.
“We’d written the song Self Destroyer’ (off Empty Body) somehow concurrently with the early People Used To Live Here demos and it had a sense of momentum to it that immediately engaged us.
“Once that energy was there it was an obvious choice for the next record, compressing our intuitive emotive peaks into raw forward motion.
“We all wrote collectively with the new focus in mind.”
Spook the Horses supported Neurosis in New Zealand in 2018, The Ocean in 2019, and the band was planning to hit European shores this summer.
“This is a rough time for touring musicians everywhere,” Gay says.
“Although our plans to finally visit our European fans and the enormous honor of being asked to play ArcTanGent Festival this year have fallen through for reasons beyond our control, we’re looking forward to touring internationally as soon as it’s possible.
“We’ve had a long time to hone these songs into a razor-sharp edge and we cannot wait to share them with the world.”