This is a review of "The Heritage" recorded by Her Name Is Calla. The review was written by Colin Burrill in 2008.
There is little doubt that the continuous hiatus of Godspeed You! Black Emperor has left many fans disgruntled - times spent freshly observing the dark orchestral beauty of records such as Lift Your Skinny Fists Like Antennas to Heaven or F#A# Infinity now seem like a long distant memory. Thankfully, this debut (mini) album from (soon-to-be Leeds based) Leicester quartet Her Name Is Calla suggests we might have someone to finally fill the void left by their seemingly endless vacation.
Though more akin to GYBE, Her Name Is Calla also display similarities with the likes of Low and iLiKETRAiNS. Please don’t let the cross-references fool you mind, this quartet are far from ‘just another post-rock band’. Their jaw-dropping Condor And River EP made sure of that. If further evidence was ever needed then The Heritage sure takes care of that too… cue the distressed guitars, sinister orchestral/piano arrangements and haunting vocals all of which, contribute towards a deeply complex and disturbing sound.
The brooding opener ‘Nylon’ sets a healthy standard with a creeping guitar line, grief-stricken trombone and reverberated vocals. In the closing stages of the astounding ‘New England’ swirling arrangements give the impression of complete and utter disorientation and terror. ‘Motherfucker! It’s Alive And Bleeding!’ lingers gently with eerie strings, piano before bursting with angry vocals for an unforgettable finale. And if that wasn’t enough, the wonderful hidden acoustic song at the end of closer ‘Rebirth’ demonstrates that Her Name Is Calla have the ability to shake things up a little when needed.
An album that demands attention and patience in equal measure, The Heritage is an absorbing debut from a very exciting outfit. If you will, call it a violation of your mental senses – only this kind of merciless interrogation never seemed so good.