MGLA - Exercises in Futility LP
The strength of this band as far back as Presence (the only thing I haven't heard by this band is the split they put out with Clandestine Blaze) has always been the straightforward riffs and how they remain memorable, even when emphasized and repeated. Somehow, despite staying strictly confined to a melodic black metal realm leading to a similarity in theme between songs, this band has a multitude of tracks and moments that stand out. Exercises in Futility is no exception to this; while my favorite tracks on this album were the first and last ones after the first few listens, I started gravitating towards "Exercises II" and "Exercises IV" once I had listened to the opener and closer way too many times, and then eventually the rest of the tracks grew on me once I gave them more time. Every track has something really cool to offer, which is something I couldn't even say about past Mgla albums--they're not impervious to a stinker or two, after all, but there are none to be found here. Exercises in Futility is surprisingly diverse despite remaining within the parameters of the band's style, and as a result it sounds the most well-rounded of any album they've put out.