Taking their name from an archaic term referring to the New Forest region of England's South Coast, London-based quartet Great Ytene first made their debut in 2013 with a pair of dark psych-pop singles. Not long after, they signed with Bella Union, releasing an album-length six-song EP for the label before losing both their label deal and all of the audio files for their follow-up release due to a technical issue. Heading back to the drawing board, Great Ytene emerged reinvented and reinvigorated in early 2017 with Locus, a clamorous mix of shadowy post-punk, Krautrock, shoegaze, and psych. Released by British indie Faux Discx, the nine-song LP treads the line between lonesome detachment and fiery attack, relying heavily on sonic experimentation and Motorik rhythms to propel the music forward. Essentially a guitar band, Great Ytene are at their best when strong melodies and dissonant riffs collide like on standouts "Mono Aware" and especially "George Street," which resonates with a strange cold jangle. The tone of Locus is unerringly dark with the repetition and harsh timbres occasionally tilting proceedings into the overly bleak, but there is enough overall nuance to keep the listener engaged for the duration.
AllMusic Review by Timothy Monger