For Daxma, “Unmarked Boxes” Hold Sorrow and Joy (Early Album Stream)
What makes truly emotional music powerful isn't just how agonizingly it portrays suffering, but how well it also manages to convey the entire spectrum of emotion. On their upcoming album "Unmarked Boxes," Californian post-metallers Daxma capture feelings of grief, sadness, and loss in exquisite detail—and what makes their portrayal of these heartfelt emotions so poignant is the valleys of hope and confidence their doom-laden post metal soars through when it's not spelunking the depths of doubt and despair. The climbing and falling moments that connect these extremes, full of momentous energy, are like that brief period right before tears come: pure emotion welling up and rushing through the blood, bottled up and peaking before it can be vented.
The band's post-metal sound, rich with heavy riffs when it counts, is a swelling blend of everything from gentle shades of violin and minimalist percussion to titanic walls of noise and furor. Fully enveloping the listener, it billows with brassy warmth like a far-off horn signalling to someone lost at sea, growing stronger and more persuasive the longer you listen. Enjoy the full experience now, as we're premiering the full album below:
Daxma's outpouring of feelings is intense enough that the band resorts to other languages when English fails to capture the necessary complexity. Words that aren't quite translatable to English serve as titles for two tracks midway: "Hiraeth," a Welsh word roughly meaning homesickness, and "Saudade," a Portuguese word equating to deep longing. Both of these words are hyper-condensed pools of emotion in themselves and really need a paragraph or so to convey their full meaning—or, I suppose, a set of powerfully-wrought tracks. While "Hiraeth" rallies for multiple waves of heavier, crashing sound that wreak emotional havoc, "Saudade" more gently reflects on what's lost and perhaps never found. In the narrative of the entire album, inspired by a 13th century poem, these gloomy moments are perhaps unavoidable, but not the end: each loss is only a harbinger of something new to come.
The band explains further:
Unmarked Boxes is named after and directly inspired by the 13th-century Persian poet Rumi's poem, the opening lines of which, ‘Don’t grieve, anything you lose comes back in another form’ comprise the song titles of the latter half of the album. While our previous releases were thematically connected to various philosophical and anti-capitalist political traditions, “Unmarked Boxes” explores difficult personal topics such as grief, depression, longing, and the process of overcoming. As a band, we have been working on this material for some time, only recently feeling like we've undergone the musical and spiritual growth necessary to achieve our vision and put this album out into the world.