I didn’t think a math rock record could capture what I imagined it must feel like to ride into a desert sunset on a trusty steed, but the opening strains of Run Golden Boys new album Metanoia appear to put that notion into question. Run Golden Boys represent the small but nonetheless vibrant Mexican math rock scene, also featuring notable compatriots such as Dogteeth, ((( drúk ))) and Nos Somos Marineros. Stylistically their sound falls on the gentler side of math rock, utilizing smoothed out mathy trademarks inside song structures more reminiscent of post-rock. Though a couple tracks pack a bit more punch and momentum, the record’s strength lies in the way it seduces your brain into a sweeping, cinematic space.
The diverse range of percussion in Metanoia, including congas and maracas, feel like the sun beating down over a long day, while the pensive tremolo picked melodies evoke the thoughtful composure of a Morricone score. These additional layers of percussion serve to really distinguish Run Golden Boys from their peers; there are effectively two layers of percussion going through these tracks which allow for a lot of syncopation and rhythmic interest on an album that generally sticks to regular time signatures.
Augmenting the standard rock instruments with some Latin timbres is a really fresh twist to the math-rock aesthetic and doesn’t ever wear out its welcome. Combined with its especially beautiful album cover, Metanoia is a downright pleasure.