Matchess came out of nowhere to blew the doors off my skull late last year and I still can’t get enough. This is the solo work of Whitney Johnson (she also plays in the excellent Verma and Disappears’ sideproject, E+), Chicago resident and general sorceress. With Seraphastra, there’s no going back. On the surface, it seems simple enough, but there’s so much depth to her compositions and bass-heavy riffage that there’s always new layers to unearth.
Johnson’s voice is like a hammer that won’t stop. Over the top of a bed of minimal rhythms, synthetic melodies, and guitar squalls, her vocals spin out of control like an ancient spiral circling toward the cosmos. I imagine some future civilization unearthing her music in 1000 years and holding it as a sacred relic. Seraphastra is timeless, bizarre, and absolutely wonderful.