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Soundtrack to the Apocalypse,
This review is from: Those Who Tell The Truth (Audio CD)
You should never judge a book by it's cover: a CD, on the other hand, you should, at least if this Texas quartet are anything to go by. The mood of 'Those who tell the truth...' is perfectly summed up by the cover art - based on the story of the appearance of the Angel of Mons, complete with soldiers silhouetted against a wartime sky.
Make no mistake, this is war music: not militant but redolent of the drama and tragedy of war. This could be the sanitised soundtrack to the reality of human conflict. Powerful, darkly melodic guitars alternate between picking out lyrical, deceptively peaceful lines and letting loose with huge, brief crescendos. In each of these six songs can be found the calm before the storm, the storm itself, and the shell-shocked lull that follows. The drums especially make full use of military cadences and rythms in the build-ups to occassional cadenzas.
Although I came to this album through listening to Godspeed, Explosions in the Sky are not really 'post-' anything, except in mood, and use basic rock techniques to superb effect. There is nothing groundbreaking in terms of style or content and - besides a monologue at the beginning of 'Have You Passed Through This Night?' lamenting 'this great evil'- there is no found sound or tape effects. Listeners looking for something different, experimental or new will be disappointed. But as instrumental rock albums with apocalyptic overtones goes there are few comparisons. If Godspeed portay a post-apocalyptic soundscape than Explosions in the Sky recount the apocalypse itself. The music is very sad and at times epic, but amidst all the drums and guitars are the beautiful and fragile melody lines, magnified by the context in which they're found.