The not-easily-pigeonholable PacNW metal band Usnea will release their first album in six years, Bathed In Light, on May 26 via Translation Loss (pre-order). They recently put out lead single "From Soot and Pyre," and we're now premiering second single "The Compleated Sage." It's an intense six-and-a-half minute song with elements of doom, sludge, post-, black, and death metal that never really fits neatly into any category. Here's what vocalist/guitarist Justin Cory says about it:

"The Compleated Sage" is inspired by the hungry ghosts of Zen Buddhism and the wendigo demon of Native American lore; creatures who are insatiably greedy and self-interested to their own extreme detriment. Much like the basis of our entire current civilization. These parables exist to remind us of our interdependence and mutual fates.

We wrote this song later in the album-writing process, but it was based upon riffs I had been kicking around for a long time during quarantine. This is probably one of the most dynamic songs we’ve ever written. That said, it is also one of the funnest to play. Teeth-clenching shrill black metal morphs into a glacial funeral death-doom passage and then a psychedelic post-rock decay. It is also a challenging song to play and after 12 years as a band, I like that we are writing challenging music for ourselves.

Check it out:

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