Tuesday, November 22, 2016

Alter : "Embers"

This band from Baltimore shows why you never want to rush out and be in a hurry to get your end of the year lists out, there is still plenty of gold yet to be discovered . Where does the shoe gaze begin and the punk rock end is one question that could stand to be asked of this album. But I am not sure you really want to ask too many questions here as they seem to have a good thing going. The vocals to "Deja Vu" are rather pained and fragile to what other wise moves like a brisk cloud passing you over head as you stared in a stoned haze out of the passenger side window. The thunder comes down harder on the more powerhouse "Static Sea". The vocals emote more on this song and go up into a higher register.

It could be argued that while these guys are no metal, they certainly have a more aggressive take on Deafheaven when it comes to shoe gaze. If this has you scratching your head, think of it this way these guys are harder than Nothing. Deafheaven's take on shoe gaze is pretty run of the mill My Bloody Valentine mixed with a little Smiths inflected post-rock, they just happen to book end it with black metal. The aptly named "Hypnotized" has a more post-punk like bass line to it . The bass continues to propel things going forward into the next song "Walls" but here it reminds me more of the Twilight Sad, due to the fact it carries a very deliberate and dark groove to it's moody musing.

The title track has a more more metallic intention to the tension it sets up, which could also be said to be aggressive as it gets in your face rather than moping about. The vocals stay in the background and continue to be their moodier side.This is song is pretty massive in it's dynamic scope finding the band really covering a lot of ground and leaving you impressed . I'm so impressed I'll round it up to a 10. It does recall some almost emo moments if you think back to bands like Elliot. Fans of moody music be it emo or shoe gaze will find something to like here.


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