"Locrain are at the top of the dark experimental music heap these days. Although their songs lack traditional form and structure, there a visceral quality to their music that recalls some of the most potent and powerful metal and post-rock. Last year's stunning genre-smashing "The Crystal World" made Locrian the band to pay attention to, while raising the bar for everyone else. Since then, they have produced a collaborative LP and single with the like-minded Horseback and the "Dort Ist Der Weg b/w Frozen in Ash" 7", which, for my money, is one of the best releases in any format this year. So to say that "The Clearing" was one of this year's most anticipated releases for me is a bit of an understatement. Even without hearing the whole thing, this was already a must have album among discerning music fans. Naturally, "The Clearing" not only lives up to expectations, but exceeds them to an extreme."