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CVLT Nation’s Top 10 POST-ROCK Albums of 2020

#10 ELEANORA MERE

Eleanora is ready to take you to places you’ve been too afraid to look inside yourself. The blend of genres in their music brings the catharsis of post-rock, sludge, and screamo together to make compositions that feel like they’re slicing open that meat suit to let out the fiery soul within. This is music that channels rage and pain into soaring, jagged riffs and takes you deep into melancholy breakdowns. Right now, hit play on Eleanora’s offering Mere and escape your bleak reality for a few minutes…

#9 O V T R E N O I R Fields of Fire

Something I just heard really made sense to me. “Whatever pain you are in, there are so many other people in the world who are in the same pain.” It can sometimes feel like you’re the only one who’s experiencing it, but open up your device of choice and you’re bombarded with the pain that your fellow human beings are in. It unites us like almost nothing else does. O V T R E N O I R‘s album Fields of Fire is bringing me to a place of understanding. With their expansive sound and profound resonance it feels like they’re manipulating the electromagnetic fields of emotional, physical, and mental turmoil so much of the world is in. In a way, there’s no such thing as “phantom pain,” because pain is something that transcends the physical, and it can be in the very air we breathe. Our only choice is to breathe it in, and remember that while our minds may be screaming, our souls are at peace with knowing.

#8 Pothamus Raya

Pothamus conjures profoundly moving post-rock that reminds me that with all the control we think we exert on existence, our mother has far more power than we are capable of comprehending. Acknowledging her through her own creations is what keeps us grounded on this planet. She created the fire in our bellies, the low-end that vibrates our waters, the deep resonance that issues forth from the cracks in her soil, and with the dark, psychedelic sounds of Raya, Pothamus pays tribute to her power and constant presence in our puny lives.

#7 DDENT Couvre-sang

Never have I ever needed more for music to take me out of my mind. I need songs that push all thoughts from my head and leave me with only sound vibrating through my veins and bouncing off my bones. That’s what DDENT‘s gorgeous new offering Couvre-Sang is giving me – a cleansing escape and a place where I’m free to only feel. Right now, we’re honored to be sharing this post-rock tome with you in full. If you’re feeling the downpressors on your chest like I am, I hope this album gives you some solace and space to breathe.

#6 B R I Q U E V I L L E Quelle

What does an isolated mind sound like?

That’s what Belgian post-rock band B R I Q U E V I L L E set out to find when they began recording their new record Quelle in the COVID-19 world. I don’t know about you, but when the world seemed to change overnight, I immediately began anticipating the art and music that would emerge from the confusion and disorientation we found ourselves in. So I’m really excited to be sharing this album with you; a true time capsule for a year that none of us will forget. It’s eerie and harsh, and at the same time it’s comforting and uplifting–a perfect soundtrack for a year that’s brought us utter destruction and death and at the same time as many of us are awakening and ascending. Blending heavy psychedelic doom with noise, B R I Q U E V I L L E have created something that mirrors the intensity we’ve felt enter our mental space in 2020, and the looming freedom from oppressive patriarchal systems that many of us know is on the horizon. Did isolation crush your soul, or open it up to the infinite creative possibilities? Are you mourning what was, or anticipating the opportunity to envision something new?

#5 Untitled With Drums Hollow

I’m an 80s baby and I’m a sucker for noisy/fuzzy/jangly guitars, steady drum beats, and pessimistic vocals and that’s why I’m in love with the debut from Untitled with Drums. Their post/noise rock sound is exactly what got me into music as a teenager, and it’s bringing my angsty youth bubbling back up in my memory.

#4 Ingrina Siste Lys

As the world spins on its axis of uncertainty I find solace in awesome music that gives me the upliftment I need to move forward! Honestly, I was a fan of Post Rock before the pandemic, but now I love this genre even more. In my downtime I find myself blasting this magical music in my regular life because it gives my mind the freedom to wander. Something about Post Rock speaks to the Human Condition and strengthens our inner compass. This is why the new record from the band Ingrina entitled Siste Lys is so important to me! To say I’m impressed by this band would not be doing them justice because I’m actually amazed. I would say if you had to check out one Post Rock record this year, this should be it!

#3 Envy The Fallen Crimson

Maybe it’s the soaring, emotionally eviscerating post-rock ENVY gifts us and maybe it’s the distant memory of losing myself in the physicality of sound, but I’m crying listening to this album. It’s highly emotional music that pours pure love into my eardrums until I’m overflowing with it. I don’t understand the lyrics, but I feel like this album is ushering us into a better world where real unity is possible.

#2 I Hear Sirens Stella Mori

Oblivion is something many of us are seeking these days. Our systems are crumbling, and the abolition we really need seems so massive and overwhelming. The most important thing I keep reminding myself is that we’re in a historic moment of change. It lives in every action we take, every brainwashed thought we notice, every ingrained reaction we have to the people we encounter every day. If we can teach ourselves to respond differently to the world, and change our perspective so that instead of looking at our neighbors in fear we look at our overlords in defiance, any new society is in our reach. Listening to I Hear Sirens‘ album Stella Mori, I feel like there’s space for all of these thoughts to live, take root, and flourish. The album came out September 18th via Post. Recordings, dunk!records, and New Noise China – order here (US) and here (EU). This band makes breathtaking music, expansive and pensive, punishing and hopeful, and they remind me to be grateful but also to nurture the fire in my belly that wants to see this system on its funeral pyre. 

#1 pg.lost Oscillate 

There’s something about the ambient post-rock soundscapes of pg.lost that makes me feel like I’m not lost at all. It’s more like music that finds you lost and fearing the worst and wraps its sonic arms around you and lets you know you’re good, you’re exactly where you need to be. There’s massive energy in the sounds they make and it feels healing. Like if I just follow the psychedelic riffs and driving drumline I’m walking the right path, and if I just put my pain on the current that flows around and through me as I’m listening to “E22” I’ll be free of it. Today I’m excited to share this cathartic experience with you, too, because I know I’m not alone in feeling this way. Read the full feature here.

Written By

Meghan MacRae grew up in Vancouver, Canada, but spent many years living in the remote woods. Living in the shadow of grizzly bears, cougars and the other predators of the wilderness taught her about the dark side of nature, and taught her to accept her place in nature's order as their prey. She is co-founder of CVLT Nation.

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