Comprised of members of Sunn O))), OLD, Scorn, and Blind Idiot God, drone-doom outfit Khanate have been off the radar for some fourteen years. After stating in interviews that a reunion was more or less off the table, the band surprised fans last month with the completely unannounced new album To Be Cruel, promising its physical release would land shortly on Sacred Bones... and here it is. Don't be fooled by its three-song tracklist, this is a full on, sprawling, brutal, and howling hour of power. - Flying Out
The highly influential Khanate return with their first album in 14 years, developing their singular and signature precise, temporal abstract doom beyondall thresholds. Khanate are Stephen O’Malley (Sunn O))), KTL), James Plotkin (OLD, Scorn, Phantomsmasher), Alan Dubin (OLD, Gnaw) and Tim Wyskida (Blind Idiot God).
Unflinching and brutal, the seeds for To Be Cruel were planted in October 2017 when Tim and Stephen spent a week in the English countryside at Orgone Studio with Jamie Gomez Arrellano. James began working these sessions into overall suites of music, a process the band has classically used on all of their prior albums. By spring 2018 initial song arrangements were proposed and over the latter half of the year bass, synth and vocal tracks were added. 2019 saw the completion of writing and recording at which point it was passed to Randall Dunn to mix, alongside the band, in 2020.
The three songs that comprise To Be Cruel are complex, powerful and multi-dimensional. The music is all-enveloping; dry, alive, rich, and blistering.
1. Like A Poisoned Dog
2. It Wants to Fly
3. To Be Cruel