The Italian band Formalist released their 3 piece debut album ‘No One Will Shine Anymore’ in March 2018 through the Third I Rex. The album consists of only 3 songs, but each of them is longer than 10 minutes.
It all starts with a track called ‘Arson’. The quick and powerful sound of the guitars and scream immediately hints what we are dealing with. Distorted guitars, slow and nasty riffs accompanied by a low pace drumming, with small changes of theme here and there is what the band served for us on the first track. The second part of the song is really interesting, with the guitars getting even slower and more distorted. However It seems something was missing in the whole song to call it complete.
Second track of the album is called ‘Foul’. The longest composition on the record delivers a mix of strong sludge parts with a bunch of strange sounds, with the police radio chats dividing the song in parts. The song is faster than the first one, starting with a howling echoing sound that jumps directly to screamed out vocals. ‘Foul’ is definitely ‘the thing’ on this album.
Last one – ‘Mainlined’ – has the most interesting and melancholic guitar riff of all pieces. Not many changes or improvisations can be found during the song, it’s just eleven minutes of pure doom music. What is most interesting in ‘Mainlined’ is the small portion of clean, not screamed-out vocals in the last minute of the track, which is closed by acoustic guitar.
To sum up, Formalist delivers almost 40 minutes of pure doom sludge sounds, which I have to admit are quite fresh, and despite the length of the songs, easy to digest. The mixture of many styles, with the biggest influence of sludge and doom, have created a nice and interesting music. ‘No One Will Shine Anymore’ is a nice debut for the band and I hope the next record to, at least, keep this level.