Downhill – Gate
A coldwave aesthetic reigns supreme on the Downhill’s icy “Gate”. The nods to old school industrial are a pure joy for they ensure that every element is given plenty of room to roam. Details matter from the skeletal handclaps to the increasing intensity they bring into the fray. With elements that feature a bit of early Nine Inch Nails’ razor-sharp focus, the atmospherics cut right to the very bone. Unlike Nine Inch Nails however there are no vocals. None are needed for a narrative comes into view, thanks to the hypnotic looping, eerie melodies, and geometric rhythms. Once all of this is brought together there is a dazzling display, an exquisite tapestry of sound.
The echo that opens the track features a great deal of dark ambience at its best. From this initial impulse the melodies begin to come together. Yet, for however densely packed the song eventually gets, there is a drive to it, one that helps the piece along. Nearly classical with its elegant display the many different effects stun. Melody upon melody enters into the mix as well, creating this Byzantine system, a call and response for machinery. Everything here features that unique tactile grip, the thing that truly defines exceptional aural brutality. By holding nothing back they make sure to get into the psychological side of things, for the song has a meditative reflective gaze about it one that refuses to let up.
Downhill sculpts their own unique sound, sidestepping trends for something a bit more classic on “Gate”.