I think I was initially drawn to Distances becasue of their placement within a sea of other styles of metal. Atmospheric sludge and post metal is not a style that is heavily explored compared to other genres. In fact when it is done it usually falls into the post metal camp which is even sometimes another name for instrumental metal. There have been a few bands recently that have explored to the very primal roots of atmospheric sludge. While that name sounds like it is made up to describe a sound that doesn’t exist, I can think of nothing elese that would caputre the feeling of drowning in jet black waters.
First thing one needs to realize is the vocals from the very Karl Deuble are similar to ones used in hardcore or even early atmospheric sludge. There is a forceful rasp which is pronounced that drives the momentum. Though it takes a bit to become acquainted to the sound, Distances works cohesively as a band which makes their EP Forage & Reproduce successful. Though Distances does not sound entirley divorced from their influences, the band also, and probably more importantly, separates themselves into their own sound. This cohesive nature includes the addition, and perhaps incorporation of strings by Kristen Radoslovich. Even though Forage & Reproduce is only 30 minutes, songs like “Death” and “Forage” take their time in the build and release of tension. Even though this maybe the first time ever meeting Distances, one can only hope for more in the future.
Distances does not seem to have gotten as much recognition in the past compared to the level they probably deserve or even hoped for. Forage & Reproduce is quite remarkable in the fact that it feels more direct than their past two full lengths. . Whether or not it is the less serious nature of an EP release or the fact the band is making a stronger effort to push forward creatively, Distances manages to make something that is interesting and entertaining for its entire running time. This is wonderful for any band but in a style that is almost dead, it is something to smile and silently root for.