Neurosis have spent more than three decades redefining what heavy metal is and what it can be. They’re a multifaceted beast, moving in many directions depending on where their creative forces guide them and combining sludge metal with prog-rock arrangements, spacey soundscapes, and postrock instrumental layers. The members of the five-piece band frequently break away to focus on their own projects, and their solo work provides insight into how Neurosis have conquered so many realms of heavy and experimental music. The solo catalog of guitarist and vocalist Steve Von Till features stark folk songs and spoken-word poetry, and his latest offering, 2021’s A Deep Voiceless Wilderness (released on the band’s Neurot label), also incorporates pensive, sweeping instrumental postrock. Touches of primitive acoustic guitar lay the groundwork for gorgeous, stirring string quartets, ambient electronic waves, and psychedelic synth pulses. Much like Neurosis’s music, it’s epic in scale, cinematically beautiful, and emotionally gutting, but Von Till uses a less-is-more approach rather than his band’s characteristic wall-of-sound heavy-metal style. There may be no crushing drums, full-stack electric guitars, or guttural screaming in the mix, but this material is every bit as powerful and intense.
Steve Von Till, Helen Money, Sun 7/3, 8:30 PM,Empty Bottle, 1035 N. Western, $20, 21+