Neurosis - A Sun That Never Sets 12 inch
The title of this release carries a current of sad irony. After well over a decade of dedicated touring and recording, Oakland, CA's acclaimed sonic trailblazers seem, indeed, with this disc, heading inexorably towards twilight. Certainly, there has been an aesthetic sea change, and a qualitative one as well; whereas once Neurosis generated an epic maelstrom of sound done better than anyone, that signature was pared down a bit on the previous effort, Times of Grace. With A Sun That Never Sets, Neurosis has taken it's newfound range, and a near Mahler-esque interest in the dialectical arrangement of quiet and loud dynamics, into even more reflective, contemplative territory. The plodding guitar and noise texture tsunami that characterized every album from Souls at Zero onward has lost its steam, and if not lost steam, it has lost its potency, and, from the sound of this disc, even the band understood that. One can only hammer for so long; soon enough, the nail will be fully driven, even into the toughest steel. That said, the course of A Sun That Never Sets is determined largely by acoustic guitar and soft, folk-like singing. The standard format of electric instruments and drums have been turned down, or churned senselessly in superfluous sections tacked onto the outro's of quieter songs. Twilight, indeed. And not because Neurosis has altered its sound; experimentation and exploration is indeed a laudable, brave task, especially in the realms of noise rock and metal, where audiences can be rather unforgiving; twilight because there is a paucity of memorable material present on this Albini production, quiet, loud, or in between.
- Patrick Kennedy, Allmusic.com