“Guidance” Full Album Stream Premiere via Noisey

Photo: Nicholas Sayers

Russian Circles is a band you can watch and think only one thing: How do three people make so much fucking noise? The Chicago-based instrumental three-piece is on their sixth album now, with the release of Guidance, and seem intent on digging a new layer of depth into their sound on each one. In the vein of Pelican or Mono, Russian Circles have risen to become one of America’s preeminent loud-as-hell bands, decadent in texture and volume.

On Guidance, Russian Circles drag the listener down an emotionally draining hole that’s at times cathartic and triumphant and at others crushing and melancholic. Lose yourself in the album below and find out what it feels like to come out on the other side.

Guidance is out on August 5 via Sargent House, and Russian Circles have a massive tour in support of it coming up. Dates below.

Listen to the full album stream HERE.

For all show and ticket details click HERE. Dates Below.

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Dave Turncrantz Talks About New Album ‘Guidance’

This month we got a chance to catch up with Russian Circles drummer and Istanbul Agop artist Dave Turncrantz. Russian Circles are hitting the road this summer and fall, if they stop near you, check them out, you won’t regret it. Their new record Guidance drops August 5th, 2016, you can check out a preview here. Dave is an incredible drummer, and a great guy; we’re happy he’s part of the Agop family.  

A: Does being an instrumental band influence the way you write drum parts?

DT: I think being an instrumental band makes everything more exposed and it makes me try to do things a little more musically. There are only three of us in the band so everyone needs to pull their weight to make things interesting live and in the studio. I think the hardest part of being an instrumental band is filling out the empty spaces a singer would normally fill up or another guitar player. Luckily for me, I play with two amazing musicians that have a good ear and are great at layering to fill everything out.

A: What was the process like working on Guidance?

DT: The process we use for writing every Russian Circles record has always started with just drums and guitar. Our guitarist Mike Sullivan and I will go through a number of guitar riffs he’s been working on and once we both agree on something will start from there. Once we get a structure we both are happy with, Brian comes in and we start to form the riffs into a song. Its been a process that has worked on the last five records and its nice to get a different view of the song once Brian comes in with the Bass.

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“Guidance” Pitchfork Review

There’s an organic and unforced feel to the latest album by Chicago-based post-rock trio Russian Circles, as if songs were allowed to grow wild rather than carefully cultivated.

For five albums now, the Chicago-based trio Russian Circles have made great use of post-rock most familiar’s dynamic tricks—loud and quiet; stop and start, swell and subside. But they’ve never had qualms about splicing elements of everything from metal and noise-rock to krautrock and post-hardcore into their darkly dramatic, instrumental compositions. Their last album, 2013’s Memorial, fleshed things out even further with keyboards, strings, and guest vocals from Chelsea Wolfe. But on the group’s sixth full-length, Guidance, a slightly different ethos is at play: the fine art of letting it flow.

There’s always been a sense of flow to Russian Circles, but on Guidance, it’s far more striking. On the folk-like opener “Asa,” Mike Sullivan’s delicate guitar is underpinned with surges of dusky ambience; from there, the band’s tried-and-true blend of glacial riffing and overcast atmosphere takes hold, with the chunkiness of “Vorel” tracing a direct path back to Through Silver in Blood-era Neurosis. Brian Cook’s bass churns with seismic force—the tone of his instrument remains one of the Russian Circles’ most instantly recognizable and arresting textures—and Dave Turncrantz turns his drums into an intricate apparatus of temporal dissection. Amid all that, though, the grooves reign. “Afrika” creates an pulsing undertow that’s desperate and triumphant at the same time; “Mota” switches up more often. But even when Guidance gets complicated, there’s a more organic and unforced feel to it, as if songs were allowed to grow wild rather than carefully cultivated.

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Mike Sullivan Talks to Music Radar about 11 life-changing albums



“My tastes have become broader, I’m more open-minded,” admits Mike Sullivan as we prepare to grill him about the albums that shaped his life as a musician, as well as his own band’s latest recording.

“What I like I’m in love with and can’t get enough of. I walk around with headphones and listen every day to certain bands and I’m humbled by them. I’ll think, ‘Maybe I should go into gardening or become a cook because I’m so knocked down by these guys who write great riffs.'”

Mike’s a humble man. Because he doesn’t just deliver inventive riffs of his own with instrumental trio Russian Circles, but a wide palette of expression and tone that has helped the band build an immersive discography. Post-rock, post-metal… whatever you want to claim this Chicago band as, they are masters of their own versatile craft.

Sixth album Guidance affirms that, a powerful seven-song journey through the emotive lengths Mike travels with bassist Brian Cook and drummer Dave Turncrantz to move deftly between crushing metal war marches (Vorel), delicate hymns (Overboard) and anthemic major-key positivity (Africa).

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Russian Circles New Track Premiere on Rolling Stone

Hear Russian Circles’ new song “Vorel,” off the band’s forthcoming sixth album ‘Guidance.“

Over their decade-plus career, Chicago instrumental trio Russian Circles have toured with Tool, collaborated with Chelsea Wolfe and won comparisons to Mogwai, associations that all make sense when you listen to the band’s new album, Guidance, which is due out August 5th. (The record is available for pre-order here now.) Like the music of the aforementioned artists, the album – the group’s sixth – is moody, dense and dynamic, the gripping soundtrack to an un-filmed drama. Above, you can listen to the second track from the LP, and the first to be released, "Vorel.”

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