If you don't have 40 whole minutes to completely immerse yourself in Asunder, Sweet and Other Distress, the newest album from Canadian post-rock band Godspeed You! Black Emperor, I wouldn't bother at all. Like any good novel or film, it's a journey you must complete in order to appreciate the ending.
The album is four tracks so seamlessly joined together that it feels more like a single song with three movements.
Starting with Peasantry, a steady kick-snare intro gives way to plunging electric guitar riffs, which intensify before breaking into ancient Middle Eastern scales that bring to mind snake charmers at an Arabian bazaar.
The 16-minute second movement - Lamb's Breath and Asunder, Sweet - lets you catch your breath before the melody returns and marching drums join the guitars for the climax. The music intensifies, the guitars soar, but it never goes crazy.
Free of lyrics but deep with emotion, Asunder is pure, forceful music.