Stephen Lawrie has spent the last 30 years putting his music on simmer. When his project The Telescopes began, it was one of a few dozen U.K. groups that aimed to refract the unfettered sound of The Velvet Underground and their other New York peers through the lens of the European post-punk scene. That’s what brought the world such gloriously noisy yet deceptively poppy outfits like The Jesus & Mary Chain and The Primitives. But as his fellow Brits started to emphasize their chart-friendly ideals, Lawrie and his revolving door of collaborators escalated the feedback, drone and drama.

It’s been a slow reduction but as As Light Return the new album by The Telescopes reveals, the group has gotten to a nice, syrupy consistency. The song “You Can’t Reach What You Hunger” oozes along like a steady lava flow, leaving a trail of scorched earth in its path. The rhythm is a dusted afterthought, a nodding-off backbeat that just barely holds the rest of the song upright. Even Lawrie sings as if he was woken up from REM sleep and shoved in front of a microphone. The real beauty is, as ever, the whirl of guitar noise that Lawrie and the members of the Glaswegian band St Deluxe who back him up on this new LP cook up. The peals and swells they create are the perfect levels of engulfing and desiccating. It puts you under its spell but with a tone that assures you that enlightenment awaits.

As Light Return will be available on July 7th on Tapete Records