Alternative Metal / Progressive Metal • United States
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Rishloo were an alternative metal band from Seattle, Washington. Their style notably contains strong progressive rock influences. Formed in 2002, they released three studio albums before they disbanded in 2012 following the exit of vocalist Andrew Mailloux. The remaining band members formed a progressive rock group called The Ghost Apparatus.
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Living as Ghosts With Buildings as TeethLiving as Ghosts With Buildings as Teeth
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none 2009
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Independent 2007
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Terras FamesTerras Fames
independent 2004
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RISHLOO Discography

RISHLOO albums / top albums

RISHLOO Terras Fames album cover 3.50 | 2 ratings
Terras Fames
Alternative Metal 2004
RISHLOO Eidolon album cover 4.50 | 2 ratings
Alternative Metal 2007
RISHLOO Feathergun album cover 5.00 | 1 ratings
Alternative Metal 2009
RISHLOO Living As Ghosts With Buildings As Teeth album cover 4.71 | 3 ratings
Living As Ghosts With Buildings As Teeth
Progressive Metal 2015

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RISHLOO Feathergun

Album · 2009 · Alternative Metal
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Rishloo are a fantastic and utterly underrated modern progressive band from Seattle. They mix pounding rhythmic buildups and vocally led alternative rock styles with progressive attitudes, effects laden guitar sections and virtuosic musical displays, all in a concise and grand manner coupled with particularly intelligent and evocative lyrics.

The band are perhaps most famous for Tool and A Perfect Circle comparisons, but there is a lot more to the band than simply homage to the unique and oft imitated talents of Maynard James Keenan, Adam Jones, Justin Chancellor and Danny Carey (although if you listen carefully, it is easy to pick up on just that; for each member and their specific tones and styles, especially because Rishloo feature rhythmic and emotive vocals that use of lot of long sustained shouts over musical transitions.)

While Rishloo write artistic and creative music suited to fans of progressive rock, the music falls more on the commercial and listenable alternative rock end of the prog spectrum than on the dense, challenging and difficult end. There aren’t twenty-minute songs played at 30bpm full of drills, grotesque film samples and dissonant organs; just intelligent and interesting music written and performed by very talented individuals.

I would urge anyone who is a fan of bands talented and focused like Dredg, Amplifier, The Mars Volta, Coheed And Cambria or The Dear Hunter to try out Rishloo and see if they suit you, chances are you will not be disappointed.

Feather Gun is the band’s third full length studio album and sees an evolution and honing of the band’s sound, moving away (apart from on the brilliant opener ‘Scissorlips’) from easy Tool comparisons and further into a sound that is wholly Rishloo. Additionally, for a band who aren’t particularly well known the production job and performances are absolutely sublime, the album sounds amazing and is a genuine delight to listen to.

For the most part the songs are shorter and lighter than on their second album Eidolon, but still more adventurous, powerful and progressive than on their debut album Terras Fames. Highlights include the faster ‘Systematomatic,’ the cinematic ‘River Of Glass,’ and the excellent mixture of light and shade that is ‘Turning Sheep Into Goats.’ That being said however, the two longer tracks, ‘Downhill’ and ‘Weevil Bride’ are two of the most interesting and intense moments in the band’s entire career and I’d highly recommend that if you have never heard the band but suspect you might like them, you at least try those two songs.

This is the sort of album you can utterly lose yourself in, the sort of album that you don’t listen to absently, you really engage with it, willing it on through its many evocative twists and turns like when it bursts from a serene soft section into distortion and screaming or equally when it is driving forward with real momentum and then suddenly sours and stops almost as if the song were a film and the director chose this point for the main character to suddenly die totally shocking the audience as it cuts to his funeral and taking the story in an unexpected direction. You listen to the songs over and over again and understand or interpret them differently multiple times, discovering new favourite parts on almost every single listen, and sometimes being genuinely taken aback by the sheer emotive weight of the lyric-and-vocal-delivery combo.

In summary; Feather Gun is a brilliant record from a truly underrated band that fans of other modern progressive artists should really explore. All of their albums so far have been strong and Feather Gun is no exception, if you have any interest in Rishloo pick up a copy, you will not be anywhere close to disappointed.


Album · 2007 · Alternative Metal
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Rishloo are an exciting and hugely impressive modern progressive band from Seattle, USA. Their sound is a very powerful and mixes soft haunting sections of what could be described as poetic beauty, with harsh and heavy build ups, unusual patterns and complex instrumental sections.

The band can often get compared to Tool because of the similarities in the vocal department, and indeed if you do enjoy Maynard James Keenan’s voice and vocal patterns then Rishloo are definitely a proposition you should explore. Musically; there are some very clear and audible influences from Lateralus era Tool as well, especially on this album, but the band aren’t simply a Tool rip off.

Their sound comes with more light and sweet moments and travels into other territories, perhaps like A Perfect Circle and even certain less obvious parts of Coheed And Cambria’s sound. The best way to explain it is that each musician plays and uses tones and equipment similar to Tool, but the songwriting is quite different.

For example, the track ‘Alchemy Alice,’ has some very Maynard-esque vocals when the song gets loud and heavy towards the end, but the track ‘Freaks & Animals,’ is unlike anything Tool would ever write, in the same way that Mastodon and Neurosis share very audible and direct similarities but go about songwriting is utterly different ways.

When you get past who they do or don’t sound like however, this is an utterly superb album, tracks like ‘Eidolon Alpha,’ and ‘Disco Biscuit,’ are dynamic and powerful examples of superb musicianship and extreme talent. From occasional touches of piano, to effects laden bass-guitar and disjointed hi-hat triplet lead beats and odd time signatures, Rishloo provide a brilliant listening experience.

Eidolon is the second studio album from Rishloo, and sees the band getting more direct and focused, with more frequent heavy moments and songwriting which is more memorable and professional than their previous works whilst still retaining musical complexity. Put simply; it is a fantastic record, absolutely fantastic!

This is one of the most instantly enjoyable records I have heard in the last few years, and got put on repeat pretty much from the time I discovered it. If you like Progressive music, especially modern progressive music then I strongly urge you to give Rishloo a listen.

RISHLOO Terras Fames

Album · 2004 · Alternative Metal
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Rishloo are a modern progressive band from Seattle who frequently draw comparisons with bands like Tool and A Perfect Circle for vocal similarities and Dredg, Amplifier, The Mars Volta, Coheed And Cambria or The Dear Hunter basically just by virtue of them playing modern progressive music without sounding too much like any of the 1970s Prog bands.

Terras Frames is the band’s debut full length studio album, released in 2004, and obviously being the debut of a relatively unknown band doesn’t have the most amazing production job in the world, at least compared to their later work or the releases of bigger, richer bands.

Compared to the two releases which would follow it, Terra Fames is a lot more restrained and normal sounding both in terms of progressive moments and metal sounding moments; the band don’t use as complicated structures or as many guitar effects or experimental tracks and generally write comparatively quite straight forward music throughout.

The album also doesn’t flirt with heavy moments and screaming in the same way as those that followed it as a general rule, and while there are a few big moments such as on ‘Seven Rings Left,’ they don’t have the same explosive power and ferocity as the biggest moments on their later work have.

Despite the fact that their later work took things much farther, and are some of the genuinely best and most exciting records out there, that does not in anyway mean that Terras Fames is in any way even approaching being a bad record. Tracks like the powerful ‘The Water Is Fine,’ with its impressive drumming, as well as the fabulous ‘Illumination,’ and the album closer ‘Fames,’ are well worth the time of any listener and illustrate the vast potential of the band even at this early stage in their career.

The band’s very strong talent shines through on Terra Fames and the lyrics are just as perfectly formed and impressive as on all their later work. The record is very pleasant to play from beginning to end and nothing on it seems particularly weak or out of place, there are lots of interesting musical ideas on offer and impressive musicianship throughout. Anything from this record would sound great on a compilation or live set amongst their later work as importantly it all still feels like Rishloo.

Overall; Terras Fames is something you should definitely pick up once you are a fan of Rishloo, perhaps not the best choice for your first Rishloo album, but still absolutely worth trying. The only criticism one could fairly level at the record at all is that the albums that would follow are better, but that is more of a compliment in favor of those records rather than a problem with Terra Fames.

RISHLOO Living As Ghosts With Buildings As Teeth

Album · 2015 · Progressive Metal
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Living As Ghosts With Buildings As Teeth is the crowd-funded reunion album from the incredible Seattle Progressive band Rishloo. Its their fourth full-length album overall and sees the band back together now that singer Andrew Mailloux has returned to the fold and the other bandmembers changed their separate crowd-funded new instrumental band The Ghost Apparatus back into Rishloo. Its been an interesting wait as a fan, but I won’t bury the lead… that wait was well worth it!

Consisting of just eight tracks with no intros, outros or hidden bonuses, this is the bands most succinct and concise offering to date, but you can file that under fat-free and lean rather than skimping on extras.

Stylistically; if you haven’t heard the band before, they are often compared to bands like Tool, A Perfect Circle, Coheed & Cambria, The Mars Volta, Porcupine Tree, Soen, Dredg, Fair To Midland, Jurojin, Cog, Karnivool, Circe, The Mayan Factor and others. No single comparison there really does justice to what you can actually expect, but if you understand the sort of common theme between all of those bands you can at least expect the right ballpark. On top of that, Rishloo are also constantly developing and evolving, and no two of their albums sound that much alike because they progress and change over time (while always retaining a certain core identity where you can still tell its them straight away) so even their own catalogue doesn’t necessarily train you for what to expect here. This album is stylistically a million miles from their 2004 debut Terras Fames, but in a way that makes sense and feels logical.

In that spirit, Living As Ghosts With Buildings As Teeth is no simple retreading of their back catalogue, nor any attempt to sound like someone else. On this album Rishloo sound like nobody but Rishloo. Even the previous Tool comparisons bounce limply off this album like wooden arrows off a tank. Hints is all you get, the rest is new. This record sees the band mix things up even more and explore different sounds, textures and combinations. Drew tries out new voices and styles he hasn’t used before, such as the deranged sounding heavy vocals in the middle of ‘Winslow.’ There are guitar styles a past fan wouldn’t expect. Things that only came up once on a previous album are given more time.

The rhythms are more disjointed and jarring. There’s even more playing in uncommon time signatures and switching between tempos; opener ‘The Great Rain Beatle’ is particularly jagged, its unhinged and yet hypnotic like some psychedelic nightmare and makes Mars Volta comparisons more understandable… its like the most jagged parts of ‘Scissorlips’ made into an entire song. So too is the jazzier single ‘Landmines’ in its heavier sections. Although that being said, towards the end from the guitar solo onwards that kicks into some beautiful, straightforward head-banging energy.

There are also more hints of classic ‘70s Progressive Rock here than there have been on previous albums, to the point where (deep and hidden) you get feelings of almost Tales Of Topographic Oceans era Yes sounds at some stages (such as the middle of ‘Dark Charade’), and the intro to ‘Salutations’ reminds me a little of Pink Floyd’s ‘Hey You’ and ‘Don’t Leave Me Now’ updated through some Radiohead and Deftones filters. There’s also five-second bursts of King Crimson influence all over the place in spidery Fripp-esque guitar runs crammed in there every now and again by the underrated Dave Gillet. None of it is overt though, its subtle, bubbling under the surface. Hints.

Its difficult to pick album highlights in such a well-crafted, concise and consistent body of work; ‘Dark Charade’ for example has THAT riff, and afterwards kicks off into an exciting build-up that feels like the sequel to ‘Downhill’ off of the previous record and ‘Dead Rope Machine’ is just so unique, its like every song has its own identity and something completely singular to offer. Gun-to-my-head I’d have to recommend that you check out ‘Winslow’ (which people who followed the whole Ghost Apparatus period might recognize) and ‘Just A Ride’ as your tester-songs to see whether or not you’d like the album. Jesse’s drums on those two are particularly excellent. ‘Just A Ride’ is the absolute perfect ending to this roller-coaster of an album and features the defining lyrics of this whole saga. That said, the whole thing works so well as a single journey that I almost feel bad picking favourites.

There are some things you can always count on Rishloo for; Firstly – interesting, poetic, provocative, intriguing lyrics. Secondly – powerful, emotional, evocative vocal performances. There’s also always interesting, spiraling, unexpected music that will defy initial expectations but feel ‘right’ once you’re used to it. Furthermore you can count on a certain arty air of mystique and most of all, quality songwriting depth that means you never get sick of the tracks, they just get better and better with each listen. Considering all these aspects, this new album is no exception to the rule, no misstep and no weak one in the set. This album has it all; whimsy, brooding, passion, intensity, subtlety, power, aggression, chilled out moments, virtuosic moments and scaled-back serve-the-song-not-the-player moments. Its got a strong sense of diversity yet feels like one cohesive whole throughout and a single journey (or ‘ride’) from start to glorious finish.

If you are a fan of the band then you unquestionably need this satisfying grower of an album. That may be a bit of a redundant sentiment but it’s the absolute truth; I know that if you are an existing fan of the band then you probably crowd funded The Ghost Apparatus or pre-ordered the record already and got rewarded with early access downloads, so recommending it to you seems like preaching to the choir… but if you haven’t checked out the band yet, or were waiting for the reviews then by all means please do give this a chance. This album is just as good as their previous work and if you give it enough spins to reveal its subtleties and hidden depths you will be greatly rewarded.

Oh, and if you enjoy it make sure to go back and check out the rest of their records too!

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