BAND OF THE WEEK: HAUNTED LEATHER

18 Nov

There’s more than a hint of slow-motion mystery in the music and overall sonic path of Haunted Leather, a band of Michigan mystics deeply involved in top-level fuzz-pedal alchemy. Their latest release, “Red Road,” does little to shed much light on the root of that mystery, nor their ultimate distorted destination. Rather, it compels us toward repeated listens – and while each listen draws us closer to the source of their gritty, grey-sky grasping, each listen also ends with the realization that enlightenment, on this red road, will never be reached.

And that feeling is very, very exciting. We recommend it highly – just as we recommend listening to Haunted Leather at high volume.

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The mystery we mention in relation to Haunted Leather is less, then, about the unknown and more about the unknowable. Reduced strictly to their core elements – guitar and drums, paired with the drone and moan of chanted incantations, all laid atop a thick molten-core of organ hypnosis – the music of Haunted Leather should be monumentally knowable. Indeed, as is befitting their name, the sound here is marked by the howling history left by all manner of the ghosts with guitars who’ve travelled this “Red Road” before them.

What gets under our skin, into our heads and drives us out of our mind is the way Haunted Leather are able to transform these signposts into spirits of their own. We hear it in the first banshee-shriek let loose on “Shapes on the Wall.” We hear it in the clean, serpentine guitar lines that float, apparation-like, over top of the glimmering “Diamond Sleep.” And we hear in the reflective, reverberating ruin of broken dreams that is “Mirror.”

It’s here that we start to assume that the tunes of Haunted Leather are less played than they are unleashed, less written than they are remembered, less knowable than they are cryptic reminders of a path still unfolding. The “Red Road” is one we’ll continue to travel – continue to haunt – for some time to come.

“There is something haunting in the light of the moon; it has all the dispassionateness of a disembodied soul, and something of its inconceivable mystery.”

Joseph Conrad

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2 Responses to “BAND OF THE WEEK: HAUNTED LEATHER”

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. HAUNTED LEATHER | Revolt of the Apes - February 20, 2014

    […] suppose it’s not been that long since we bestowed the dubious honor of “Band of the Week” upon the Michigan mystics we know only as Haunted Leather, at least depending on your perception […]

  2. LET’S TALK-Y ABOUT MILWAUKEE: THE MILWAUKEE PSYCH FEST THIS WEEKEND | Revolt of the Apes - April 23, 2014

    […] put together a line-up par excellence, filled with bands that we’ve written about previously (Haunted Leather, Sisters of Your Sunshine Vapor, Heaven’s Gateway Drugs, Verma) and bands we’ve previously […]

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