All Barren is Divider’s debut full-length yet the Long Island, New York band has been making records since 2006 – a Kurt Ballou-recorded debut EP and a split with Bone Dance, among others. Through many changes in personnel, the band has persisted almost ten years, touring the nation alongside other standouts of the DIY circuit like Capsule and Khann. The All Barren lineup consists of vocalist Chris Tzompanakis – former frontman of Skycamefalling – founder/guitarist Anthony Fusco, bassist Peter Gerontakos, and drummer Victor Mouradian.
All Barren is the sound of a band plowing forward after years of internal and external turmoil: lineup changes, lawsuits, and, most recently, the complete destruction of two band members’ homes in Hurricane Sandy. Not unlike the relentless advance of that hurricane, All Barren is a campaign of mid-paced devastation that blankets the senses and dwarfs the will. From opener “Crow Eater” onward, this is music that barrels forth unstoppably with a life of its own, radiating power.
All Barren is best experienced as a whole – it is a new masterpiece of the post-Neurosis scene. The earliest Isis recordings are one reference point – the apocalyptic drive and white-knuckle intensity of The Red Sea, for example. Those who listen through will be rewarded with “Silently Marching,” a brilliant and surprising closer that seals the album in epic fashion and exposes the band’s true range.