A stunning upset! The scorecard hints at what went wrong for Glassjaw today. For one thing, Material Control does more to challenge the listener than its 36-minute running length would lead one to believe... and those challenges don't always pay off for the listener. Also, and this is likely true of all post-metal albums, Glassjaw are quite adept at playing, but I would never call them shredders.
All that said, what the scorecard doesn't communicate is just how excellent Where Owls Know My Name is. Rivers Of Nihil leveled the fuck up with their most recent album, in virtually every way imaginable. Their musicianship, already formidable, has gotten even tighter. Add to that a greater focus on songwriting, mood setting, and an uncanny way of reinvigoratin familiar metal tropes into new forms, and you've got an album that defies categorization, surprises at every turn, and is hard to forget.
And just like that, Rivers Of Nihil become the last of only two 2018 releases to have secured a place in the Arsies' Quarterfinals! Let's see how they do next week against Intronaut. Tomorrow's work: pitting BTBAM2012 against JFAC.