Earthtone9 Announce First Album In Eleven Years

Album Review: earthtone9 – In Resonance Nexus

Earthtone9 Announce First Album In Eleven Years

Iconic British metal band earthtone9 have announced their return, signing to the legendary Candlelight Records and detailing the release of new album, In Resonance Nexus, on 21st June. Commenting on signing to Candlelight, the band said, "Candlelight Records feels like the perfect home for us. They’ve released so many earthshaking albums, and to be part of that history is both thrilling and a privilege. It’s magic to continue the next chapter of et9 working with trusted comrades, and we couldn't be more excited."Ahead of the release date, earthtone9 have shared the pulsating lead single 'Oceanic Drift' with accompanying video filmed by Shaun Hodson at Loki Films.

Check it out below.

As an example of how the band have distilled their core while also reaching out to new creative pastures, the first single 'Oceanic Drift' feels perfect. Its lyrics, meanwhile, of things not always being what they appear, also serve as a metaphor for the record, when taken at a literal value.

“I was thinking about the Joker movie, and the idea of him being the unreliable witness. So it just seemed like a really funny opening line, ‘what you see is what you get,’ because that's never been the case,” says vocalist Karl Middleton. “Also, the idea of oceanic drift is, in geological time, an incredibly slow process. That’s partially a reflection on how our last record was over a decade ago, the record before that was 12 years before that, so it's just these incredibly slow moving things.”

earthtone9 are rightly hailed by those who know as one of the most forward-thinking, clever, musically wise and creatively smart in the history of British metal. Emerging in the late ‘90s as nu-metal was beginning to surge, their more nuanced palette and intelligent approach saw them hailed as something special and excitingly against the grain from the very beginning. Making an album a year between 1998 and 2000 – beginning with their expertly crafted Lo-def(inition) Discord debut, and culminating in 2000’s staggering Arc’tan’gent – it was a workrate as intense as the music was uniformly brilliant.

After splitting in 2002 the band made a surprise return in 2013 with the crowdfunded album, IV. Following this they made only occasional appearances in the live arena (including at the ArcTanGent Festival, which purloined its name from their third album!), before once again seeming to disappear on hiatus.

Now, 11 years on from their last record, they present In Resonance Nexus, a thrilling work of brains and muscle that not only stokes a fire, but sees the band's core members – vocalist Karl Middleton and guitarists Owen Packard and Joe Roberts – rediscovering and reconnecting with what makes them so special. In Resonance Nexus is the heaviest, fiercest, most heightened record they have ever made; a startling combination of almost feral intensity and the latter-day songwriting chops they displayed on the IV album.

“In Resonance Nexus, as a title, is saying that we’ve found the core and the essence of the band again,” says Karl. “We were digging deep to find common musical ground, and between Joe and Owen, and I, it really felt like that there was a resonance there. It feels like we've landed on a really legitimate, 21st century version of the band. We were asking, ‘Why are we doing this?’ and having a very authentic answer.”

Across the 10 featured tracks the band’s signature sound is present and correct but now expanded with touches of everything from doom, to black metal, to shoegaze and deathcore.

Gathering together almost 40 songs before carefully choosing what should make the album, In Resonance Nexus is a record that’s been slowly and patiently crafted and carved out by artists prepared to throw away anything that didn’t quite have the desired effect. The results – with drum duties taken on in the studio by Bullet For My Valentine’s Jason Bowld – are a collection where every dynamic, moment of heaviness, thoughtful passage and element of aggression is perfectly placed.

The album was produced by British production master Lewis Johns at The Ranch in Southampton, a collaboration that brought the band’s vision further to life.

“Lewis is unbelievable, super creative, super enthusiastic,” says Karl. “We were attracted to the stuff he’s done with bands like Employed To Serve, Svalbard and Rolo Tomassi. He has a style, but you can also tell in everything he does that he enhances the vision of the band, rather than just imposing his thing. He was incredible in bringing the intensity and drive back into earthtone9.”

Completing the creative team is Colin Marks of Rain Song Design who created the stunning album art that runs throughout the release.

More than anything, In Resonance Nexus represents the idea that some things are just too good and too special to lie perpetually dormant. With something as pure as earthtone9, that desire to create never truly leaves you. Eventually, even after a decade or more, it wants to come out again.

“For me, this album is about persistence in heart and knowing that you can pursue stuff and do it to a high standard at any point in time,” says Karl. “It’s more vital and urgent - like the absolute distillation of what we do. This feels like a definitive statement.”

Don’t call it a comeback – In Resonance Nexus is simply the next chapter in earthtone9’s story. One that’s worth the decade wait.

Catch earthtone9 live:

17 Aug: UK, Arctangent Festival 2024

earthtone9 are:

Karl Middleton – Vocals
Owen Packard – Guitars
Joe Roberts - Guitars/Vocals
Neil Kingsbury – Bass
Jay Walsh - Drums

Earthtone9 Announce First Album In Eleven Years

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