JIRM – The Tunnel, the Well, Holy Bedlam (Review)

JIRM - The Tunnel, the Well, Holy BedlamJIRM, (previously known as Jeremy Irons and the Ratgang Malibus), are a Swedish hard rock band and this is their fifth album.

Following on from 2018’s Surge ex Monumentis, JIRM’s new offering contains 52 minutes of hard rocking atmosphere and progressive wanderings.

The Tunnel, the Well, Holy Bedlam delivers a compelling hard rock cocktail that is shot through with  elements of progressive, classic, and psychedelic rock. The music is ambitious and expansive, while also heavily psychedelic and wielding a strong trippy feel. Slow and doomy, the band’s progressive stylings are confident and bold, and they frequently craft highly immersive atmosphere with ease.

The songs are layered and involved, but the songwriting keeps things accessible and engaging. The band’s passion for their craft is clear, and there’s a vibrant energy coursing through much of the material here, despite its frequently dark and gradually-building moody veneer. The 60s/70s progressive rock auras are potent, and JIRM’s sound embodies both an ancient pedigree and a youthful vigour.

There’s a strong feeling of being cast deep into the cosmos on parts of this album, adrift in a sea of possibilities and spaced-out eternities. As a counterpoint to this, however, there’s also a raw, earthy feel to the music that brings everything back down to a more relatable level, allowing for full access to the music’s scope and depth. JIRM do well to shepherd the listener through the vastness and roughness of the environments being explored, leading the listener through six well-constructed soundscapes so that they emerge at the end of it all enlightened, and ready for more.

If you’re a fan of bands such as Pink Floyd, Alastor, Kal-El, and Yob, then this is for you.

Very highly recommended.

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