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Crone - Gotta Light? Award winner

Gotta Light?
by Leanne "Metal Maiden" Evans at 30 November 2022, 8:38 PM

Created through musical catharsis, German post-rock band CRONE has been fuelled by dark rock and inspired by the likes of ALICE IN CHAINS, JOY DIVISION and PINK FLOYD since its inception in 2014. Initially, the band’s debut EP, “Gehenna” called to many influences - labelled as post-rock, post-punk and even as shoegaze by critics – but it was CRONE’s 2018 debut full-length “Godspeed”, that poured plenty of post-rock influence into the eight-track spectacle. Fast forward to the present day, and it's very apparent that the band’s sophomore opus, “Gotta Light?”, is still focused on the profoundly poetic; beautifying the black and celebrating the bittersweet in ten sumptuous, pillowy tracks of deeply ruminative darkness.

Creeping ambience laced within simple and stunning audial layering is the glorious backbone of “Gotta Light?”, which is hardly surprising since Phil Jonas’ (formerly of SECRETS OF THE MOON) musicianship lies within the realms of black metal. The ominous opener, “No One is Ever Alive”, sheds its skin in darkly beautiful atmospheres and a doomy refrain that earworms, whilst the opulent arrangements and minor keys of “Abyss Road” rain down on your soul in a mid-tempo stomper akin to something from THE SISTERS OF MERCY catalogue.

“Gotta Light?” is enriched with dark strokes and mesmerising mood-soaked moments, hidden amongst inebriating upbeat temporal teases. CRONE pull out the sombre sounding “Gemini” with its shattering layering – an especially gorgeous guitar solo bridging the track perfectly - and luscious musicality, whilst “This is War” plays on the heartsore with softer interludes intertwined with tempestuous drum fills. It’s aspects like these that have “Gotta Light?” dripping in vitality, especially in “They” – another THE SISTERS OF MERCY style banger - with its upbeat tempo, yet still manages to dazzle, seduce and haunt your very being, especially when the bombastic chord progression and percussion really kicks in after the halfway mark.

Moving into the latter section of the full-length, the PINK FLOYD elements become much more transparent. The progressive “Quicksand” laps up injections of well-timed keys, paving the way for the ethereal qualities of “Waiting for Ghosts”, with its tinkering piano calmness, stunning David Gilmour-style guitar work and absolute audial manna for the soul. The time signatures on “Silent Song” scream FLOYD and the easy-listening vocals coupled with the steady pacing have a moreish soporific quality that effortlessly hypnotise, whilst the profound thematic of “Kenosis” is gently knit together with beautiful acoustic arrangements as a soft, syrupy lullaby to bookend “Gotta Light”.

Having previously been a fan of “Godspeed”, it was an exciting prospect to review CRONE’s recent instalment, and I’m pleased that the apple hasn’t fallen far from the tree. “Gotta Light?” retains the dark elements the band so fearlessly explored previously and embrace them with sensitive elegance, fashioning their work as a deeply ruminative, mysterious lament, offering much needed pause for thought. The cool aloofness throughout the record is bolstered by impassioned musicianship in fat guitar tones, well-thought rhythms and gravelly vocals, but ultimately, “Gotta Light?” is infused with a magnitude of mellifluous mellowness, transpiring as a sophisticated superlative creation of nourishment for the soul.
Songwriting: 8
Musicianship: 9
Memorability: 9
Production: 9

4 Star Rating

1. No One is Ever Alive
2. Abyss Road
3. Gemini
4. This is War
5. They
6. Towers Underground
7. Quicksand
8. Waiting for Ghosts
9. Silent Song
10.  Kenosis
Phil Jonas – Vocals and Guitars
Kevin Olasz - Guitars
Markus Renzenbrink – Guitars, Drums
Christian Schmidt - Keyboards
Daniel Meier - Bass
Record Label: Prophecy Productions


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Edited 01 February 2023

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