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Isis



Definitely end-of-the-world music, which goes from the crushing, cathartic violence of mass destruction to the desolate howl of wind blowing across bleak ruins and back again. You can call Isis metal, but only up to a point. Without question, their crushing, chugging two-guitar violence qualifies them as a powerful grindcore outfit, but Isis brings a lot more to the table: hypnotic, repetitious guitar-and-electronics asides, cold, gothic ambient textures, and ominous, curiously baroque bridges. It's spooky and aggressive music that iterates between gloomy introspection and forceful purging.

Isis was an ancient Egyptian goddess revered as a symbol of fertility, a giver of life. An interesting choice of names for this group, whose music suggests an acheronian world completely absent of life. The Boston band formed in 1997 around guitarist Aaron Turner, bassist Jeff Caxide, and drummer Aaron Harris. In 1998, second guitarist Mike Gallagher joined, and a year later, vocalist/noise technician Cliff Meyer followed suit. Isis quickly earned the favor of such alternative metal giants as Dillinger Escape Plan, Soilent Green, and . After a pair of EPs, Mosquito Control ('98) and Red Sea ('99), Isis issued its debut LP, Celestial. In 2000, Isis released SGNL>05, featuring the dark, tortured exercise in controlled fury entitled "Constructing Towers."