This is Tarantula Hawk's second (and second self-titled) album, following their 2001 debut on Life Is Abuse. Their label this time out, Neurot Records, is a fitting match for the band given the presence of other brooding epic-rock heavyweights such as Isis and flagship band Neurosis on the label, although this is the most distinctly "prog" album on Neurot up to this point. Loosely comparable to Larks' Tongues in Aspic/Red-era King Crimson, this is sinister, alternately heavy and spaced-out prog rock with occasional punk and metal overtones. The defining instruments are the orchestral-sounding analog keyboards and samplers (played by all three members at various points) along with Braden Diotte's ominous fuzz bass. The first four tracks (all of which are untitled) are relatively short, hovering in the 3-7 minute range, while the fifth and final one is an extended half-hour epic, proceeding from a spacey keyboard intro to a slow, funereal guitar riff, then moving through a series of feverish, dramatic ups-and-downs before finally settling into an extended feedback drone. Like the rest of the album, it's ambitious, intense, creepy, and ultimately "prog" in the best sense of the word.
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AllMusic Review by William York