Hubardo is the sixth album, a concept double album, by Kayo Dot, self-released and funded through pre-orders on frontman Toby Driver's Ice Level Records in 2013. It is the follow up to Gamma Knife, which was released in 2012. It is Kayo Dot's longest album and its first double album, and contains aspects of black metal, post-rock, jazz fusion, and chamber music. It is considered a throwback to maudlin of the Well and early Kayo Dot recordings, containing much more metal-style harsh vocals by Driver and collaborator Jason Byron than any Kayo Dot album. It also contains much more repetition, metal riffs, overdubs, polyrhythms, and double bass drums than past Kayo Dot albums, while maintaining the band's typical wide-ranging jazz- and chamber music-influenced orchestration. It was picked as the 4th best album of 2013 on indie music website SputnikMusic.
Hubardo was co-produced by Driver and longtime producer Randall Dunn. Occasional collaborator and former maudlin of the Well vocalist Jason Byron recorded his first vocal performance since 2002's maudlin of the Well album Leaving Your Body Map on the song "The Black Stone". He also wrote the lyrics for the album and a 40-page book, entitled "The Sword of Satan", packed with the vinyl copy of the album detailing the story behind Hubardo.
After leaving Hydra Head Records and releasing Gamma Knife independently, Driver crowdfunded the album entirely through pre-orders on independent music website Bandcamp. Shortly after the release of the album, Driver announced that he was in the process of producing a triple LP "super limited black vinyl" that was limited to 200 pressings which contained a 40-page book detailing the concept behind the album entitled "The Sword of Satan" written by Jason Byron.
From their Bandcamp:
HUBARDO is the seventh studio album by veteran avant-metal maestros, KAYO DOT. Produced by Randall Dunn (Sunn0))), Master Musicians of Bukkake, etc.), and with a running time of almost 100 minutes, the music follows an epic and heartbreaking narrative of a meteor falling to Earth and its enchantment and alchemical transformation of a lonely poet.
HUBARDO, meaning "lantern" or "lamp" in the magickal language of Enochian, marks the band's tenth anniversary. As such, it features aspects of all the shades of KAYO DOT from the past decade, including some that even hearken back to the band's former identity, the progressive MAUDLIN OF THE WELL, such as the album's opening: a stark and disturbing guest vocal appearance by MOTW screamer Jason Byron - his first recorded appearance since 2001.
From weird metal to beautiful post-rock, from demented ballads to tripped-out 70s fusion, this double-album has it all. With HUBARDO, KAYO DOT have crafted an enormous masterpiece of 21st-century progressive music.
released August 30, 2013
Toby Driver - bass, synths, piano, rhodes, organ, vocals, percussion.
Ron Varod - guitars. Keith Abrams - drums.
Daniel Means - tenor sax, alto sax, clarinet.
Terran Olson - flute, alto sax, piano, organ, and synth solo on "Floodgate".
Tim Byrnes - trumpet, horn in F. Mia Matsumiya - violin, synths.
Jason Byron - guest vocal on "The Black Stone" intro.
Randall Dunn - synth design.
Jessika Kenney and BC Campbell - guest backing vocals.
Produced by Randall Dunn and Toby Driver at Avast in Seattle, WA, April 2013. Recorded and mixed by Randall Dunn. Assisted by Scott Cedarholm. Mastered by Jason Ward at Chicago Mastering.
Album photograms by Rachel Wolf. Band photos by Toby Driver.
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