Russian Circles: Mladek

Today, post-rock trio Russian Circles is releasing their new full-length album, Empros.  I'm currently in the midst of reviewing the album for No Ripcord, so expect that to be posted as soon as tomorrow.  In the meantime, the full album is available for streaming as are a few singles.  "Mladek" in particular demonstrates the extent to which Russian Circles captivates via Empros, their penchant for expansive sound brought down to the crucial riff.  Whatever radiance you hear, keep listening: softness eventually gives way to might.

All links and info come courtesy of Us/Them Group.

Russian Circles new album Empros in stores today, North American headlining tour starts in November

Full album streams on and Spinner

Photo credit: Chris Strong

"Empros is one of the most viscerally exciting and completely entertaining albums I've heard in a long time. There is perfection in the air and the battle for album of the year just heated up again." 10/10 rating -- Iann Robinson, Crave Online

"It's not a stretch to say it's the band's best album yet." -- Rock-A-Rolla
Chicago trio Russian Circles release their highly anticipated and critically praised new album Empros today. SPIN Magazine recently featured a full album stream preview and all this week AOL Spinner hosts an album listening opportunity as well.

Russian Circles hit the road yet again this Fall with headlining dates across North America beginning in November. Please see complete dates below.

The band also recently premiered an MP3 from the new album via The song, "Mladek" is available to listen/download HERE.

Russian Circles return with not only their fourth and heaviest album to date -- but also with
Empros they're poised to take the crown as innovators reinvigorating the staid trappings of genre. Empros picks up where the anthemic riffs and melodies of 2009's Geneva left off and injects evermore slithering rhythms amid skull-crushing heft with all the visceral intensity of Godflesh, Swans and Neurosis. Put simply, Empros is Russian Circles' Master of Reality: a radical revision of both heavy and melody that is monolithic in its clarity and perfection. Or, like a lone surviving wooly beast emerging from a brutal winter's frost, Empros is the sound of a band shaking the ages from its shoulders with all the brutal force of a behemoth awakened.

Taking to Chicago's Phantom Manor studio once again with producer Brandon Curtis of The Secret Machines & Interpol -- who also helmed the band's previous album
Geneva -- Russian Circles set out to experiment with their sound in new ways that would still reflect their live sound. In so doing, the band reached a new creative apex in which each of the musicians, guitarist Mike Sullivan, drummer Dave Turncrantz and bassist Brian Cook impart a streamlined and intensified attack to their songs that pummels even as it shifts throughout a range of moods and tempos.

The album opens with an imposing mechanical drone leading into funereal guitar notes that are abruptly interrupted by a propulsive drum beat as the proceedings of "309" erupt into something akin to a neo-industrial revision of Celtic Frost. The song lunges through nearly 9 minutes of masterful rhythmic shifts and brutal guitar warfare with such assertive grace it sounds as though the band is throwing down a gauntlet defying all challengers. "Mladek" kicks off with the soaring notes of Sullivan's signature hammer-on guitar arpeggios as Cook's volume-swelling bass notes surge like bubbling molten lava. Turncrantz's innovative rephrasing of the drum pattern elevates the song as it slinks from part to part, guided by the syncopated chatter traded between chiming guitar notes and churning bass. Elsewhere, there are beautiful moments of melodic respite, helping to underscore the album's majestic strength. And, there may even be a few surprises awaiting within the album's six tracks. There are riffs, yes -- many of them. But, with
Empros the entire band seems to be the embodiment of the riff itself.Empros is Russian Circles' first full-length to be released worldwide exclusively via Sargent House, the band's longtime management company and record label that had previously released only the vinyl editions of its three prior albums. It is available everywhere on LP, CD and Download on October 25th, 2011.

11/02 Houston, TX @ Fitzgerald's #
11/03 Denton, TX @ Rubber Gloves #
11/04 Austin, TX @ Fun Fun Fun Fest - Auditorium Shores
11/05 Austin, TX @ Red 7 - Fun Fun Fun Nights (with Boris, Tera Melos & #)
11/07 New Orleans, LA @ One Eyed Jack's #
11/08 Atlanta, GA @ The Earl #
11/09 Newport, KY @ Southgate House #$
11/10 Columbus, OH @ Ravari Room #$
11/11 Detroit, MI @ Magic Stick #$
11/12 Toronto, ON @ Lee's Palace # *
11/13 Buffalo, NY @ Soundlab # *
11/14 New York, NY @ Bowery Ballroom # %
11/15 Hoboken, NJ @ Maxwell's # %
11/16 Philadelphia, PA @ First Unitarian Church #
1118 Cleveland Heights, OH @ Grog Shop #
11/19 Grand Rapid, MI @ The Pyramid Scheme #
11/25 Portland, OR @ Doug Fir Lounge # +
11/26 Seattle, WA @ Neumos # ^
11/28 West Hollywood, CA @ The Troubadour #
11/29 San Diego, CA @ The Casbah #
12/02 Milwaukee, WI @ Cactus Club $ >
12/03 Chicago, IL @ Lincoln Hall $ >

# Deafheaven

$ Young Widows
+ Helms Alee
* Indian Handcrafts
% The Men
^ Crypts
> Anatomy of a Habit

Artist: Russian Circles
Label: Sargent House
Release date: October 25th, 2011

Track list:

01. 309
02. Mladek (MP3)
03. Schiphol
04. Atackla
05. Batu
06. Praise Be Man

On the Web:

Letters From A Tapehead


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