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Monoliths and Dimensions

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Monoliths and Dimensions album cover
Big Church [megszentségteleníthetetlenségeskedéseitekért]
Hunting & Gathering (Cydonia)
Album Information

Total Tracks: 4   Total Length: 53:38

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Wondering Sound

Review 6

Alan Light


Sunn, Monoliths and Dimensions
Label: Southern Lord

On their seventh studio release, Sunn O)))'s core duo of Stephen O'Malley and Greg Anderson augment their power chord drones with horns, strings, choirs and even conch shells. This might prompt comparison to the orchestrations on Black Sabbath's sixth album, Sabotage, but Monoliths and Dimensions is far more experimental. The eclecticism of the numerous guest musicians, including fusion trombonist Julian Priester, experimental violinist and arranger Eyvind Kang, Earth's Dylan Carlson, and black… read more »

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The Most Important Artistic Statement This Decade


Monoliths & Dimensions is quite simply a new context for powerful guitar music- plain and simple, no smoke, no mirrors, no shit. I would define the "context" as it applies to Monoliths a set of ideas which seek to warp or totally change the rules and apply brand new ideas to questions like: What is Music?, What is a Song?, What is an Album? and trust me, Sunn O))) has redefined the answers to all of those questions so thoroughly that the the artists that will follow them have got so much new canvass space to work on that I can't believe how excited I am about the future of music in a post- "Monoliths" world. 10/10

user avatar

best of the year?


This will by high on my list of best of the year. Sunn O)))'s experimental tendencies are pushed the furthest yet, in an incredible set of collaborations with some top names in new/experimental music. It is their most varied I've heard, and found the last track particularly beautiful. And I'd like to join in congratulating e-music for finally giving experimental artists who record long tracks the compensation they deserve.

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Here's the Deal...


Longer songs are going to take more than a single credit. Learn to deal with the reality of THE ARTIST DESERVING TO GET PAID (else they can't make music anymore - welcome to the real world, kiddies) and stop being a fucking whiner/cheapskate.

user avatar

stop compaining - review the album


if you've never heard of this band or of this type of metal, then check it out. maybe it's for you. you don't have to download to check it out. the samples will give you more than enough. if you like what you hear, download it because it's basically going to be 9 to 17 minute long songs of the same droned out guitars - which is cool. don't get me wrong. it's just not everyone's cup of tea. so if you don't like it, just pass on by. nobody wants to read negative reviews or hear why emusic sucks. cancel your fucking subscription if it's so bad.

user avatar

credits, huh


Since this album has become a forum for complaining about the new policy, I'd like to add my voice to the disappointed customers. The credit scheme is ill-conceived and poorly implemented. Further, I went from 90/month to 50/month. I've been a customer and vocal advocate of emusic, but both of those may change given the new situation.

user avatar

Even more lame...


Even new releases from indie labels emusic carried before the switch to 'premium' service get the lame new pricing scheme? I'm down to 4 credits already this month because I downloaded 3 albums emusic already carried but were priced via the old pricing scheme (1 song = 1 credit/download) and each album had more than 12 songs on it so I got stuck spending 15-18 credits on each album. Now I want to download a new release but can't because even though it only has 4 songs it's gonna cost me 12 credits!??!!?? If emusic is going to change they're pricing structure they need to at least be consistent. I've been a member of emusic for years because they made it affordable to take a chance on a band like Sunn O))). The new 'premium' service pretty much puts a stop to that.

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What really sucks is when you download a minutemen record with 26 songs and only 30 minutes of music, emusic doesn't make an adjustment.

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New emusic policies suck!


I'll be cancelling as soon as i finish this months downloads..and i've been a customer for years here!

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eMusic used to be good for indie music lovers


As a long-time eMusic customer, so far I could download 50 tracks a month. Now, with the new Sony deal, my allowance has been almost halved to 30. Even worse, those 30 are now "credits", not tracks, and a four-track album like Sunn's latest costs 12 credits. Downloading this album would eat just 8% (4/50) of my monthly allowance -- now it takes 40% (12/30). And I couldn't care less about the Sony catalog -- for me eMusic has always been about independent labels. Time to find a new pusher for my music fix, I guess.

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These samples are so ba-aad.


The least representative 30 second samples of 20 minute songs u could ever imagine. Geez!

eMusic Features


The Noise of Neu!

By Philip Sherburne, Contributor

No history of electronic music would be complete without a chapter dedicated to Kraftwerk, the German quartet who introduced synthesizers and chugging, "motorik" rhythms to pop music - and in so doing laid the groundwork for techno (and left no small mark upon hip-hop as well, given that their "Trans-Europe Express" was heavily sampled for Afrika Baambaata's "Planet Rock"). Fewer genealogists of electronica remember to include the contributions of a group called NEU!, but the… more »

They Say All Music Guide

Sunn 0)))’s Greg Anderson and Stephen O’Malley began their career as an Earth cover band, and explored the extremes of the low-tuned electric’s guitar’s drone capability at maximum volume on The Grimmrobe Demos. Later albums, such as 2005′s Black One, showed the duo expanding its sonic extremes, engaging a deep love of black metal by adding shrieking, growling vocals by Wrest, as well as additional instruments (like drums) by Oren Ambarchi. Altar, their collaboration with Japanese rockers Boris, provided them with a wider textural and ambient canvas to explore. Their vinyl-only release Dømkirke, recorded in a 100-year-old cathedral in Norway, utilized the building itself as an instrument, where its nooks and crannies echoed back microtones of the band’s own high-powered drones on tape. That said, nothing could have prepared listeners for the wide-ranging adventure that is Monoliths and Dimensions. This 53-minute set contains four tracks. O’Malley and Anderson utilize more guests and collaborators than ever before, including vocalist Attila Csihar, who gives his greatest performance since Mayhem’s De Mysteriis Dom Sathanas; Ambarchi; Earth’s Dylan Carlson; trombonists such as jazzman Julian Priester and the Deep Listening Band’s Stuart Dempster; trumpeter Cuong Vu; multi-instrumentalist Steve Moore; male and female choirs; other reed and wind players; and violist Eyvind Kang as an arranger. While Sunn 0))) sound exactly like themselves, they seem to approach the music of composers such as Arvo Pärt and John Cage; they utilize the former’s tintinnabuli (three bells) theory as well as engage the latter’s notion of silence as a process.
If all this sounds pretentious, think again about who we’re talking about: the kings of wearing black hooded robes to perform. The set begins with “Aghartha,” full of power drone low-tuned guitars, as one might expect. Slow and plodding for five and a half minutes, it pummels on until Csihar enters in a lower than low yet barely audible voice speaking a long poem about the creation of a new Earth. Priester later enters playing a conch shell, two acoustic double bassists come in on the low end, Ambarchi plays a second electric guitar and effects, a piano sparingly adds both chord and single-note lines, and other horns and reeds flit about the background even as the piece remains unchanging in its focus. “Big Church” is the biggest shock. Commencing with an a cappella female choir, it’s soon intruded upon by four electric guitars; Csihar eventually enters in throat-singing overtone mode, as does a synth, and the tension becomes unbearable before the tune stops in dead silence. Then, bells, an organ, Kang’s viola, and trombone all find their way through the immense space provided by the slow droning yet extremely heavy riffs. Feedback screams in and then the bells enter again before power riffs crush them out. A “man choir” participates on “Hunting & Gathering (Cydonia),” with percussion, a huge Moog Voyager, electric tamboura, and horns amid the droning guitar mayhem slowly penetrating the listener’s skull like a giant worm. By the time the set ends with “Alice,” featuring a trio of trombones, woodwinds, reeds, ambient sounds, enormous guitars, and oscillators, the effect is complete. Monoliths and Dimensions succeeds because it is the sound of a new music formed from the ashen forge of drone, rock, and black metal. In its seemingly impenetrable, slow, spacious, heavy sonic darkness, this is the new way forward for not only Sunn 0))), but for extreme rock music and possibly even what’s left of the avant-garde. Brilliant. – Thom Jurek

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