Thursday 23 February 2017

HARK - Machinations (Album Review)

Release date: February 24th 2017. Label: Season Of Mist. Format: CD/DD/Vinyl

Machinations – Tracklisting

1.Fortune Favours The Insane
3.Nine Fates
4.Speak In Tongues
6.Son of Pythagoras
8.Comnixant 30
9.The Purge

Band Members

Jimbob Isaac - Vocals/Guitar
Simon Bonwick - Drums
Joe Harvatt - Guitar
Tom Shortt - Bass


Having made big waves and gained impressive plaudits for their debut album Crystalline, there could have been pressure for Hark to follow that up, such was the impression that the album made. If there was however, it is not evident in the music of the follow up album Machinations.

This is the sound of a band, packed full of confidence, making exactly the album they want to. There have been a few tumultuous moments for the band though and these are addressed throughout Machinations and they are done in a way that makes the bands sound even more powerful. Take a song like Disintegrate which is a full throttle and riff heavy beast of a track, a song that bursts forth with anger but also passion and hope, this is the sound of Hark today and it sounds very good indeed.

This even riff heavier emancipation is a step forward for the continuation of the Hark sound and is a full on statement of intent from the band. Songs like the sprawling Son Of Pythagorus, the antagonistic Speak In Tongues, the sheer heaviness of Nine Fates and ballistic opening track Fortune Favours The Insane are crushing riff packed anthems packed full of ideas that are realised sonically and evidence of how good a band Hark are.

The tracks seem even more weighty this time around and are an undeniably powerful collection of songs that deserve listening to, digesting and then listened to once again and it is also a collection of songs that will find extra depth and power in the live arena.

As the album ends with the almost nine minute epic The Purge, which is the perfect end to this album and this song seems to encapsulate the whole feeling of the album into its length, it is clear that this has been the sound of a band reborn. It is bleak and doom laden at times for sure and this works undeniably well but the spirit and soul of Hark and Machinations feels uplifting and unbreakable. A heavy listen in more ways than one from commencement to conclusion.

Words by Gavin Brown

Machinations will be available to buy via Season Of Mist on CD/DD/Vinyl from February 24th 2017. You can also buy vinyls from HARK's BandCamp Page.