Something unlike anything you’ve heard before, SEVERANCE is the 9th release from multi-instrumentalist, compulsive creator, and unrepentant volume addict Timo Ellis (Cibo Matto, Spacehog, Yoko Ono) under the NETHERLANDS moniker. Officially out today via Svart Records, SEVERANCE features all the hallmarks of Ellis’ work, including blistering post-shred guitar heroics, primal drumming, and soulful, yet searing caterwauls. But as with every NETHERLANDS release, Ellis has inexplicably found a way to ratchet up the intensity, render the dynamic shifts more extreme, and hone his menacing melange of melody and rhythm into a uniquely weaponized form of rock ‘n’ roll that reaches towards high art.
To coincide with the release of their new album, NETHERLANDS have shared the video for their animal-rights anthem ‘Animal Insults’. Band leader Timo Ellis comments,
‘The song (and video of) ANIMAL INSULTS is more or less a straight up, punk rock animal-rights anthem/ scream of anger and grief. IMO, any regular meat/ fish/ dairy eaters that have the (relative) privilege + access to be able to *extremely easily* transition to a fully plant-based diet…ought to summon the guts to unflinchingly watch footage like this…in order to plainly see how horrifically inhumane (and socially and environmentally catastrophic!) the worldwide, legal, factory farm system really is. The current cultural and commercial manifestations of malevolent, ecocidal speciesism need to be dismantled, at scale…and as soon as humanly possible. ANIMAL LIBERATION RIGHT NOW! ‘
Watch the video now: https://youtu.be/BkA9ilL027w
An album exploring topics as heavy as the ones SEVERANCE tackles requires sonics to match. For Ellis — a prolific producer and engineer himself — the skills and peerless engineering sensibilities of tastemaking heavy music producer Kurt Ballou (Converge, High On Fire) and the hallowed walls of Ballou’s God City Studio in Salem, Mass, proved the ideal space to capture the record’s massive sounds. For Ellis, Ballou’s unmatched attention to detail and “comprehensive tuning” of the drum and organic guitar sounds on SEVERANCE proved to be an x-factor in capturing the most monstrous and fully refined NETHrock release to date.
An album which makes it easy to understand why contemporary heavy metal luminaries like Joe Duplantier of Gojira and Bill Kelliher of Mastodon count themselves amongst NETHERLANDS’ biggest fans, SEVERANCE is another chapter in the book of a band that’s consistently released heavy music on its own terms and with its own undeniable personality.
Svart Records proudly presents SEVERANCE by NETHERLANDS out on CD, black- and transparent red vinyl colorways and digital platforms on March 31st 2023. Timo Adds,
‘We are extremely grateful to SVART, and generally super excited to release SEVERANCE in its entirety, out into the world. In terms of tonal and emotional variety, narrative cohesion, and overall creating a unique mood, we believe it is our best work; I hope everyone enjoys it!’
Netherlands: Severance (CD/LP order link)