Necking “Final Embers of Sunlight”

I used to have a semi-regular dream where I’d have an insatiable itch and eventually I’d scratch it so much, the skin would break and millions of tiny spiders would pour out. It fucked me up every time. I haven’t had it in ages, thankfully, but there’s a visceral quality to Necking’s horrorshow, Final Embers of Sunlight, that oddly takes me back to those first, sweat-soaked moments after waking up from that nightmare. It makes me never want to listen to this album, but it’s so damn good I can’t help myself.

Necking is the trio of Amy Cimini, Nick Lesley, and Scott Nielsen (they’re also joined by Dong-Ping Wong on “Green Weather”). Overwhelming the senses with a chaotic mix of howling electronics, shapeshifting viola scree, and charred guitar drones, Final Embers of Sunlight never lets up. Even in quieter passages, like the aforementioned “Green Weather,” a leaden anchor weighs down the searching guitar leads and frenetic percussion. Anticipation roils through the guileless corridors, ready for the coming destruction.

Surfaces that were once pristine have succumbed to elemental rot and decay. Opener “Spiderwebs in Every Corner We Left” begins with feedback screams and thunderous rhythmic slabs. It’s the opening of a wound. As the space widens, denser textures and filthy tones begin seeping out. “Fuzz Will Cover the Floor” pulses like a racing heartbeat, squalid guitar shards jutting out at impossible angles dripping with cavernous spite while a river of fizzing hiss grows stronger with each palpable rhythm. Any minute, the walls will cave in.

All across Final Embers of Sunlight, the bodies are creeping out of the woodwork to drink up the darkness. When the end comes, with the cathartic sound wall on “Wires Only for Perching” and the lamenting coda, “Nature Breathes Electricity,” there’s no room left to move. Necking has used every twisted, gnarled trick and every sad sack of rotten mud to bury us alive. Those final guitar chords sweep our memories out of view, ready for another congregation to obliterate. 

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