Truth be told, I’m not typically a fan of instrumental records; I’m a person that enjoys lyrics in the music I listen to. With that being said, I cannot stress this next statement enough: Purple Gaze by Manila’s instrumental rock quartet The Insekt Life Cycle completely blew me away.
The EP opens up with a song called “Purple Drank.” Within the first minute of the track, I knew I was in for something special and different. The track starts with smooth, clean guitar tones, and almost immediately builds up to something I can only describe as psychedelic euphoria as the rest of the band comes in and starts you on the journey that is their three-song EP.
“Sungaze” continues along the same lines as the opening track, but this time we’re treated to something slightly more upbeat than the previous song. Actually, I’d say the title “Sungaze” is absolutely appropriate for this song. Take a moment to look directly at the sun, and then close your eyes. That’s what this song SOUNDS like.
The EP ends with a song called “Tristful Ecstasy,” and while this song was probably my least favourite of the three, that doesn’t diminish the fact that it was still a great way to end the album. At this point, we’re treated to the most funky-sounding song on the EP, with strange effects peppered throughout the entire track.
Overall, the three guys in The Insekt Life Cycle have really created something special with their Purple Gaze album. My only complaint (and truthfully, it’s not even a real complaint) is that the EP was too short. But I suppose that could work in the band’s favour, because despite the EP’s length, it was still more than enough to draw me in and leave me wanting more. Do yourself a favour and buy a digital copy of the album for the small price of 2$. It’s worth every penny. I’m definitely looking forward to any future releases from these guys.
- Dominic A, Bucketlist Music Review
When you listen to this album, it's hard to believe that the band members have a history in death metal and mathcore bands. Where we hear on this album is nothing less than quality post-rock, or instrumental, psychedelic rock. However, if you realize that one has to be a pretty skilled musician to even be able to write death and progressive metal, imagine what these guys can do in a softer outfit. The previous bands still seem to leak through at times, making this a pretty unique e.p.
There's three songs on Purple Gaze, each one of them breathing the same, hazy atmosphere but still quite different from each other. Using influences from post rock, stoner rock and progressive metal these guys from Pateros Metro Manila (Philippines) have composed some very strong tracks.
The longest one, 'Purple Drank' is a solid, lengthy post rock anthem, supported by dreamy soundscapes and layered guitars in best Explosions In The Sky tradition. 'Sungaze' reminds me of Monkey3, be it a bit softer and with some psychedelic elements. These elements grow even bigger in the final track 'Tristful Ecstacy', a song that seems to have escaped from the late sixties or early seventies and comes very close to krautrock.
This variation almost make the e.p. sound like a compilation but an excellent compilation nonetheless. So yes, this is a highly surprising e.p. from a highly talented rock band. The metal roots have dissapeared into the background but are clearly present in the song structures.
These guys have spend many years trying to master their instruments and are now ready to take their craftsmanship to the next level. I can only applaud such an evolution and I recommend this gem to every post-rock, stoner rock and psychedelic rock fan out there. We better keep an eye on these guys...
- Serge, Merchants of Air