What heard wasn’t the sound of whiny kids playing basic chord progressions at increasing volume. What I heard was some pretty damn heavy music. The cover may seem innocuous, but this isn’t a clean album in the slightest. Sure, the vocals may be a tad bit whiny, but that bass sounds like someone clogged the amp with shit, and I mean that in a good way. Grievances is post-metal that’s WAY more towards the sludge side of things. I wouldn’t even call this really atmospheric sludge, this is just rank sludge that happens to have a bit of atmosphere to it.
What’s more, Kowloon actually knows how to build tension. It isn’t just through increasing volume, it involves timing, strumming away at unresolved chords until they’re pounding away at your skull, waiting for the release, and then giving that release at just the right moment. I never feel this in post-metal, but I actually had some emotional reaction to some of the tracks on here. That’s a major revelation in that I previously did not think that was possible. But hell, these kids did it, and deserve a lot of credit for it.
The one major knock here is that there really isn’t much variation throughout the short run time of the album. If you listened to the first track, you basically listened to the whole album. Despite this, this is definitely a worthwhile album to listen for anyone looking for a post-metal/sludge album that doesn’t skimp on the hardness, while still delivering an emotional experience.