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SUNN O))) - Kannon

Format: LP
Label & Cat.Number: Southern Lord sunn250
Release Year: 2015
Note: three new studio tracks by the drone metal gurus, coming back to their main characteristics: the massive guitar-bass work of STEPHEN O'MALLEY and GREG ANDERSON, continuing the path of the "classic" SUNN O))) sound.. "Abyssic atmospheres of vast grinding drones. Layered, liturgic cavernous ritual. Gorgeously sculpted feedback flowmotion" [AQ Rec.]; BLACK vinyl + luxus gatefold cover
Price (incl. 19% VAT): €22.00

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"Kannon is an album which was composed in the aftershadow of SUNN O)))s most recent successes in immersive collaboration (the group worked with Scott Walker on Soused, Ulver on Terrestrials in 2013 and 2014) and also from the broad and influential wake of their epitimous Monoliths & Dimensions . Kannon emerged both independently as a conceptual entity and with roots in the legacies of those projects, yet was fully realised years later, in 2015. The album is 36 minutes in length and consists of three pieces of a triadic whole : Kannon 1, 2 and 3.

The album celebrates many SUNN O))) traditions ; Kannon was recorded and mixed with SUNN O)))s close colleague and coproducer Randall Dunn in Seattle, in Studio Litho, Aleph and Avast!; and the LP includes performances by long term allies and collaborators Attila Csihar, Oren Ambarchi, Rex Ritter, Steve Moore and others. And at the core the composition centers around the dynamic and intense guitar and bass interplay of SUNN O)))s founders : Stephen OMalley & Greg Anderson.

Its possibly the most figurative album SUNN O))) has created, which is unusual as they usually dwell in layers of abstraction and subjectivity. On the other hand the album is the most outright metal in years, drawing personal associations and memories of cherished albums like Panzerfaust and Twilight of the Gods again to the forefront of consciousness. At the third time it is very close to the cyclical character of mantra which the band has evolved into as a living creature, the enormity of intense sensate detail and manifestation of the live in concert face of SUNN O))), the organism that has flourished, metamorphosed and transcended tremendously over the past ten years.

The literal representation of Kannon is as an aspect of Buddha: specifically goddess of mercy or Perceiving the Sounds (or Cries) of the World. She is also sometimes commonly known as the Guanyin Bodhisattva (Chinese: 觀音菩薩) amongst a plurality of other forms. There is a rich lineage behind this idea tracing back through many asian belief systems, with as many names and cultural personifications of the idea.

SUNN O))) commissioned critical theorist Aliza Shvartz to write a text / liner notes around these ideas and topics. She also explores the relations and perceptions to their approach to these ideas via the metonym of music and SUNN O)))s place/approach within the framework of music and metal overall.

SUNN O))) also commissioned Swiss designer/artist Angela LaFont Bollinger to create the cover artwork, an abstracted sculpture of vision of Kannon, and the French photographer Estelle Hanania to capture portraits of the core trio (Csihar, Anderson, OMalley) in the impressive and obscurant Emanuel Vingeland mausoleum in Oslo.

The LP is packaged in immaculate tip on gatefold sleeve by our long time comrades Stoughton Printing, and pressed at Cascade in Portland, Oregon. CD, download and coloured vinyl versions are also available.

Stephen OMalley & Greg Anderson / SUNN O))), 11 September 2015" [label info]

Released December 4th 2015
Attila Csihar - Vocals
Stephen OMalley - Guitar
Greg Anderson - Guitar, Bass Guitar
Oren Ambarchi - Guitar, Oscillator (K1,K2)
Randall Dunn - Korg MS 20 (K1, K2)
Rex Ritter - Moog (K2)
Brad Mowen - Concert Bass Drum (K2)
Steve Moore - Juno 106 (K2)
Conch trio : Dempster, Priester, Moore

Recorded at studio Litho, Avast! and Aleph, Seattle by Randall Dunn

Mixed at Avast! by Randall Dunn
Assistant recording engineer (Litho) : Mell Dettmer
Mastered by Jason Ward at CMS
Kannon 1, 2, 3 written & arranged by SUNN O)))
Lyrics by Attila Csihar
Produced by SUNN O))) with Randall Dunn
SUNN O))) art direction : Stephen OMalley
Cover and typographic design by Allison Lafont Bollinger
Text by Aliza Shvarts
Band portraits by Estelle Hanania / Detail from mural Vita at the Emanuel Vigeland Mausoleum, Oslo
Emanuel Vigeland Museum / ARS 2015


"Those grimrobed ambient metal overlords O'Malley & Anderson (here with guests including Oren Ambarchi and vokillist Attila Csihar) add a new opus to their extensive discography of doom/drone masterwerks! The three part Kannon, which may have germinated from the track "Cannon" found on their live Domkirke double lp from 2008, is art to play loud. All deep drones, deep voices, doubtless deep thoughts (check out the liner notes by critical theorist Aliza Shvartz). And here are OUR notes: Abyssic atmospheres of vast grinding drones. Layered, liturgic cavernous ritual. Gorgeously sculpted feedback flowmotion. Along with moments that remind us of the wide open Western spaces twang of more recent Earth (or Barn Owl) as well." [Aquarius Rec.]