I love it when metal artists veer outside the lanes we expect them to and how thrown people can get as a result. I’ve watched Scott Kelly of Neurosis give a few thousand headbangers small fits of confusion opening up for Sleep with a quiet set of acoustic tunes. And I’ve watched Jaye Jayle, the dark roots rock project of Young Widows member Evan Patterson, turn a room on its head when he played a set before Belgian black metal wizards Oathbreaker.
The work that Patterson has done under this name has only gotten seamier, more intense and infinitely more satisfying as he’s dug his heels in. And he’s reached a new peak with forthcoming album No Trail and Other Unholy Paths (out on June 29 via Sargent House). He and his band (bassist Todd Cook, drummer Neal Argabright and multi-instrumentalist Corey Smith) recorded a collection of sodium light drenched tunes and let David Lynch collaborator Dean Hurley have his way with them. It’s a devilish meeting of spirits that feels like being adrift at sea, awed by the beauty but a little scared about how you’re getting home.
To announce this new album properly, Patterson is sharing with us the clattering wonder “Ode To Betsy,” about which he says:
In creating this world of sound, I’ve visioned peaceful hypnotic nature, monstrous euphoric structures, and relative quests for certainty. Sonic terrains of tension, plateaus of primal experimentation, and the droning stillness atop of the high plains. Gazing equally into the past as onto the future. From there, looking up to the dark and shining mysteries of time and space; a story of placement comes from the physical self. Yes, that is this music, to me.