Serious Beak – Ankaa (2015)

There are plenty of ways to make noise. We have come to accept this from the overwhelming canonization of metal, which has given way to a plethora of sub-genres spanning from funeral doom to goregrind. Yes, it is surprising, perhaps even ironic, that such highly distorted cacophonies can be so multi-tiered.

So while Serious Beak‘s latest effort Ankaa is an inexplicably loud album, it is indeed a multi-facted one. Opener ‘Proto (Menura Novaehollandiae)’ erupts with furious blast beats, climaxes with bludgeoning sludgy breakdowns and gently closes with a slow resonating melodies. ‘Main Sequence (Dacelo Novaeguineae)’ is a cavalcade of crusty abrasion, reverberating post rock, progressive Mastodon-style guitar phrases, and intermittent dissonant djent-ing a la Meshuggah. In closer ‘Heat Death (Teratornithidae)’, the drone-y post-metal of Russian Circles and Pelican feels ever-present. The astute zoologists among you have also probably caught on that Serious Beak enjoy birds. Each track is the taxonomic name for a type of extinct or extant bird. ‘Ankaa‘ is another name for Alpha Phoenicis, the constellation of the mythical phoenix. It has all the quintessentials of a concept album, the meaning of which I haven’t quite figured out.

While outright abrasion seems a clear objective in Ankaa, one could also think of it as a lucid wander through the phylogenetic tree of both heavy metal (and of birds, for that matter). It has everything that made Body Hound‘s Rhombus Now such an enjoyable record last year; it is fucking loud, but also bold and dynamic. In a genre that is often denigrated for its ostentatious virtuosity, Serious Beak shine out with a captivating and undoubtedly forceful cerebral experience.

File Under

Noise rock, avant garde, ambient, metal, experimental, progressive

Sounds A Tad Like

Body Hound, Neurosis, Meshuggah, Mastodon

Standout Tracks

Main Sequence, Proto


$10 via Art As Catharsis Records


Sydney, Australia