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Experimental - Released February 22, 2019 | felte

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Just a couple of months after Chasms' Jess Labrador and Shannon Madden released their accomplished debut album, On the Legs of Love Purified, the unthinkable happened: On the night of December 2, 2016, a fire swept through the underground warehouse venue Ghost Ship that took a huge artistic and personal toll on the Bay Area indie music scene. Among the fire's 36 victims were Chasms' close friend and frequent collaborator Cash Askew of Them Are Us Too and Madden's brother Griffin, who was just 23. Chasms dealt with their loss the only way they could -- through their music. They played dates just days after the tragedy, and ultimately moved to Los Angeles for a fresh start to their music and lives. This sense of transformation permeates The Mirage. On the Legs of Love Purified brimmed with dense, velvety songs to get lost in; this time, Labrador and Madden hone their sounds and moods with results that, if possible, are even more expressive and ethereal than before. The duo uses ghostly dub and minimal electronics as The Mirage's foundations, and its echoing, shimmering songs express the hollowed-out aftermath of loss and fleeting memories of loved ones with eloquence. On tracks such as "Deep Love, Deep Pain" -- a title that defines the album's guiding forces perfectly -- and "Every Heaven in Between," Labrador's otherworldly soprano floats through cavernous spaces embellished with glassy guitars and synths, delivering mantras that teeter between soothing and despondent. It's a sound that feels like a liminal space between the classic 4AD and Projekt Records aesthetic of the late '80s and early '90s and the future of dream pop. Chasms grow even more innovative on The Mirage's later tracks, adding a purposeful pulse to "Tears in the Morning Sun" and reclaiming the heaviness of their debut on the title track, where massive drums give way to a storm of distorted guitars. As much as they evolve on The Mirage, Labrador and Madden never lose sight of the album's inspirations. By closing the album with two versions of "Divine Illusion," the first song they wrote after the Ghost Ship fire, they underscore that The Mirage's deep love, deep pain, and deep beauty is all in service of the loved ones they lost. ~ Heather Phares
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Alternative & Indie - Released October 14, 2016 | felte

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From their music to their back-story, Chasms are a testament to the power of patience. After issuing several EPs in 2012 and 2013 that piqued the interest of fans of beautifully dark music ranging from shoegaze to industrial to drone and doom metal, the duo experienced setbacks -- including a hand injury suffered by singer/guitarist Jess Labrador -- that delayed the making of their first full-length. Fortunately, On the Legs of Love Purified is well worth the wait. Even more stately and all-encompassing than Labrador and bassist Shannon Madden's early work, the album's unhurried drama unfolds at exactly the speed it needs to, letting songs seep into listeners' ears. This is also some of the duo's richest-sounding music, with Labrador's full-throated yet clear vocals and commanding guitar used to maximum effect on songs like the heartbreaking standout "We'll Go." Here and on "Between the Eyes," where an aching violin melody moves from tender to tense, Chasms allow each moment to reverberate fully. It's an approach that yields very different results with "Come to Harm"'s clanging, slashing beats, which evoke an ancient battle as much as old-school industrial music. Though the heaviness of songs such as this and "Beyond Flesh" give Chasms' music an edge lacking in many other dream pop bands, the duo delivers gorgeous homages to the style's history on "Black Ice" and "More Love to Be Found," which recalls the spellbinding work of the Cocteau Twins and Beach House. It took Chasms a while to make On the Legs of Love Purified, but it's such an accomplished debut that they won't have to wait long until they're included in dream pop's upper echelons. ~ Heather Phares
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Experimental - Released January 25, 2019 | felte

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Alternative & Indie - Released September 21, 2018 | felte

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Alternative & Indie - Released October 17, 2018 | felte

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Experimental - Released November 30, 2018 | felte

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