After the flood of releases that preceded it, Horseback's 10-month lull has been a dramatic pause. But Half Blood, the long-awaited follow-up to 2009's The Invisible Mountain, has finally been announced, "set for a Spring 2012 release via Relapse Records." No specific date has been set, but at least it's something.
In the meantime, the Chapel Hill outfit helmed by Jenks Miller has assembled two new tracks for a limited edition 7-inch, which is streaming now [see below], thanks to the heavy-centric blog OMG Vinyl.
The A-side, "On the Eclipse," features Miller's now-signature guitar meanders and scorched shriek, suggesting something descended from The Invisible Mountain, and a possible hint of Half Blood. But the song also incorporates a Crazy Horse boogie in its dominant riff, bolstered by organ swells and acoustic-guitar twang.
The B-side, "Broken Orb," is a more abstract offering. Long slabs of guitar-and-organ drone aren't new tricks for Horseback, but the bright electronics and playful drumming that cuts through the fog certainly are.
Individually, these tracks offer two distinct takes on Horseback's ever-evolving sound. But taken together, the tracks' collision of organ-driven prog-rock and charred-black metal draws a clear line to 2010's excellent split 10-inch with Voltigeurs.
"On the Eclipse" b/w "Broken Orb" will be released next month in a one-time pressing of 500 copies—150 on "black shadow" and 350 on "white mist"—via Brutal Panda Records. It's available for pre-order here.