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Manic Pixie Dream Girl
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3,590 Posts
Re: Music Club - Week 2

I'm here.


I had heard of God is an Astronaut, but this was the first time I've actually listened to them. Their style brings to mind the likes of NEU! and Tangerine Dream. Though post-rock is not necessarily my genre, I did enjoy the melancholic atmosphere of the album. I don't see myself becoming a God is an Astronaut completist, but I may revisit the album in the future. Thanks for picking it, Donnie! :anna

7 Eyes of Agamotto out of 10.

 

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Devil's Blood
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3,361 Posts
Re: Music Club - Week 1

God Is An Astronaut
All Is Violent, All Is Bright (2005)


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Not my typical go to genre, I always found the post-rock genre very cloying to listen to. I'll pre-face before I begin the review to say I might have a slight bias to not being bored when I listen to music and post-rock is a genre that bores me due to lack of vocals/lyrics or a patterned structure so it is troubling to me already.

Turning this on I was immediately hit by the aroma of post-rock right away - the building sound wall that climaxes, the structured preciseness along with the typical paint by number staples for the genre. It's not a bad thing but certainly not something I've found much interest in so I'll be as fair as I can be.

However, the WF.com Music Club is meant as a way for us to broaden our horizons and try out other tastes so I soldiered on even after being a bit winded by the third or fourth track. The issues I take with post-rock offerings is the grandeur that needs to be in EVERY track and that's this entire album. Every song kinda melded together (and not in a good way) and before I knew it the album had ended. Every song had a grand "sameness" that loses its punch after the 5th time you've heard the pay off of the sound explosion.

The issues I have with this album is the fact I could toss a few tracks into a post-rock mega playlist and not pick out who this is, whether that just spells ignorance or a paint by numbers music style (which frankly ALL music genres) is up for you to interpret. If I were to listen to post-rock I'd seek out Mogwai, not this band.

I don't want to leave on a sour note so I will compliment that these are VERY able bodied musicians who know how to craft competent and thoughtful songs true to the direction they're aiming. The structures are well spaced and surprisingly didn't sprawl to 8-10 minute jams like most bands in this genre have to offer. The drummer was awesome and the best part of listening to this and the mix was tight. I appreciate the genre and what it brings to some people but it's just not for me, sadly. As far as I'll go is post-metal (yes it's a thing) but only if its genre blended.

If post-rock and alternative is your thing you would enjoy this album.

Favorite track: "Suicide By Star"




5 Alexas out of 10!
 

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You Spoony Bard
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9,920 Posts
Discussion Starter #43
Okay, so some of you know I love instrumental music, particularly video game music and film scores. Tangerine Dream is love. I was delighted to realize this was instrumental, because I had no idea. But unfortunately, I didn't think it was great. It was good, don't get me wrong, but nothing really stood out to me. The whole album is generally just... good. Definitely not a bad thing. It was reminiscent of Explosion in the Sky albums for me, just on a slightly lower level. I don't have much more to say about it, I'm sad to say. The first album we listened to had higher highs, but lower lows. This was just good. Full stop.

6/10

Tomorrow is Sunday, friends.
 

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Premium Member
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9,290 Posts
Re: Music Club - Week 2

I love a bit of a post-rock, so I really enjoyed All Is Violent, All Is Bright. Some post-rock bands have a tendency to be too precious or meandering and I didn't really have that issue with this album at all. It's really accessible. Forever Lost stood out to me as my favorite track, it's just such a beautiful song. My one minor criticism though is that it didn't really feel like a cohesive project. Like, I enjoyed all of the songs, but they didn't really flow together and it felt more like a collection of great songs rather than a cohesive album. It's solid though and something I can see myself listening to again.

8/10.
 

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Baby It's Violence
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7,117 Posts
Re: Music Club - Week 2

This was another occasion where I was listening to this as I was writing a research paper. The one major positive I can give God is an Astronaut is that their post rock sound is really relaxing and almost blissful to listen to in a way, so much so that I didn't even realize I was midway through a second album of there's, not realizing that All is Violent, All is Bright had ended. Still, the atmosphere and aura of these tracks had an almost spacey feel to them at times, with some really tasteful guitar tones and excellent production on many of their tracks.

However, that really amounts to most of the positive I'll give this record. While I enjoyed the sound, it never felt captivating to me. It functioned well as background noise and was pleasant in that regard, but never really offered much more to me. You could have me listen to this same album maybe a few months down the line, and I don't know if there is much I would remember from it, if anything. It also didn't really feel much like an album to me, moreso like a nice collection of post rock tunes that happened to be an album.

Overall, some good background tunes to help you chill, but not much to keep interest.

5/10
 

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Premium Member
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8,251 Posts
Re: Music Club - Week 2

(Sorry for the late review, completely forgot to put my thoughts into this thread!)

Week 2

God is an Astranaut - All is Violent, All is Bright


My opinion of All is Violent, All is Bright since the last time I listened to this album a few years ago upon revisiting hasn't changed all that much. The bands/projects that I am most familiar with when it comes to Post-Rock tend to have long sprawling epics, often comfortably exceeding the 10+ minute mark and sometimes going way beyond that mark. When done right, post-rock can be an absolute joy and adventure to listen to but when off the mark can be an absolute chore and a bore.

God is an Astranaut with this album tackles this potential pitfall by avoiding it altogether, instead cutting out all the potential filler bullshit and instead presenting an album that is concise, with the longer songs only reaching around the 6 minute mark. What we get with the finished product is an album that is consistent in terms of quality, which is the best word to describe this album: consistent.

This can make the album as a whole feel similar throughout though there are a couple of standouts for me personally. Forever Lost is a beautiful track which starts off with sombre piano melodies which builds with a slow yet hynoptic guitar riff which is accompanied by some truly gorgeous backing vocals and ambience. Suicide By Star starts with a rather haunting atmosphere with fantastic synth and drums which seem to climb and climb before kicking into gear with some really hard hitting guitar that takes the song into a more aggressive tone which works extremely well. It's songs like these which make me think this could have ended up being a very good album but unfortunately most of the album doesn't hit the height these two songs do.

The biggest negative for me in terms of this album is not what it does do but what it does not. Namely, there are a number of examples where I felt like there were some great ideas building within the framework of the song only to either abruptly end or to switch gears. This is where I think with some of the songs could have used more time, even if it were for a minute or two. A great example of this is the title track which towards the end builds with some really great uplifting riffs and melodies only to be cut abruptly short. Another good example though not as disheartening is the song Fireflies and Empty Skies which is a decent song overall but ends with a killer riff towards the end which is one moment on the album that stands out and whilst that idea is more fleshed out than the title track seems to end just as it was building to something more epic. The songs could have used more time to build off that but they both ended before we can see what those pieces could have truly morphed into, which is what I personally look for in a post-rock album. But that could be my own biases playing in and what I personally enjoy.

Overall this is a decent album, there is no bad songs on here which I can point to as a negative but the standouts for me are few and some of the songs could have used a longer time frame to truly flesh out some really good ideas. If you are someone who likes this type of music and doesn't mind the extra song lengths I would suggest Yndi Halda, Explosions in the Sky and Godspeed You! Black Emperor.

Standout Tracks

Forever Lost
Suicide by Star
Remembrance Day

6/10
 

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You Spoony Bard
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9,920 Posts
Discussion Starter #49
Re: Music Club - Week 2

So for this week, I'm going to choose one of my favorite bands and one of my favorite albums:

Room Noises by Eisley.

You'll notice right away the DuPree sisters' beautiful harmonies.
 

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Premium Member
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8,251 Posts
Re: Music Club - Week 3

I listened to the album The Valley from them years ago and I remember it being okay, though my memory of it is not as clear as the previous band/album so this will be interesting.
 

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Baby It's Violence
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7,117 Posts
Re: Music Club - Week 3

The first thing I get when listening to this is a sense of wonder, almost even to the level of admiration for their surroundings. Eisley is quite unique in that regard, to me anyway, considering I don’t listen to a lot of music which feels so airy and light at times. Even a great deal of the indie pop I frequent doesn’t often get to the levels of serenity and bliss that Stacy and Sherri feel when I listen to some of their lyrics on this album. Songs like Lost at Sea and Brightly Wound have an adventurous, carefree feel about them at times, as if they were walking though some scenic nature while they wrote some of the lyrics.

Themes of love appear as well, such as the folk tinged melodies of Golly Sandra which retains that light airy feeling, to even a bit of longing in others like My Lovely, a ballad which feels like it was meant for a specific person who might not be around anymore.

Sonically, the music melds well with their vocal harmonies, but really the latter is the star of the record, leading the melody for just about every song. In fact, they usually will soar high above each track, although the rhythm section of the band remains both loose, yet rock solid and dependable, if a bit complacent at times.

The album ends on the ever catchy trolley wood, ending on the theme of wonder ever so prevalent on many other songs. Overall, this isn’t a hard listen by any means, rather it’s an enjoyable one that makes me smile and feel a little lighter in the mind. If anything, it makes me want to take a nice stroll in the woods, and see if I can ever find that trolley wood…

7/10
 

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Devil's Blood
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3,361 Posts
Re: Music Club - Week 1

Eisley
Room Noises (2005)


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This will be a short review as there is not much for me to state about it.

This album is a tightly paced and a relatively easy listening experience. Lots of melody and vocal highlights are here. Production is top notch and the sound is very crisp and shimmers with most of the indie pop I've heard. Songs are seamless and transition well into each other. So much to the extent the album felt rather short even though it clocked in around 40 minutes, which tends to be an average length for an LP.

Not quite my wheelhouse but I have a strong weakness for the female voice in well crafted music. I doubt I will return to this album but I enjoyed my time with it!

Favorite track: "Memories" and "Marvelous Things"




7 Alexas out of 10!
 

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THE EXTREME HORSEMEN
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5,978 Posts
Re: Music Club - Week 3

I thought I was going to really love this after the first couple of tracks, but I didn't, unfortunately. The singers voice was nice and relaxing and I liked most of the songs, but they just didn't grab me the way I hoped they would after the first couple of songs. Don't get me wrong, I liked much more than I didn't, Telescope Eyes was my favourite. But it just didn't quite reach that next level for me. It was a breeze to listen to, though, short and quaint.

6/10
 

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Premium Member
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9,290 Posts
Re: Music Club - Week 3

Such pure light voices! That's probably my biggest takeaway from Room Noises - the vocals. There was almost a bit of a whimsical quality to quite a few of the songs, which made for a fun listen. Nothing groundbreaking here, but then again, I don't think that's what they were going for. My Lovely and Brightly Wound are my favorite songs from it.

7/10
 

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Registered
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Re: Music Club - Week 3

Going through a rough time in my life right now and things have been pretty chaotic.


I'll make sure to listen and review all of the stuff that I missed out on, including Donnie and Katti's albums.


My apologies. Wish that I was more committed, but my mind is elsewhere atm. :/
 

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Premium Member
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8,251 Posts
Re: Music Club - Week 3

Week 3


Eisley - Room Noises


A number of years ago I listened to the album The Valley by this Indie Pop group and honestly it did not grab me much at all so coming into this, I wasn't sure how I would feel about this album.

The first thing that got my attention unsurprisingly was the beautiful harmonic vocals, if I was questioning if this album would engage me in any way, the opening track Memories was certainly determined to put those questions to bed. The soaring vocals in the middle of the track in particular harmonized with some beautiful piano work and rock solid rhythm guitar were an early highlight in the album.

The lyrics were a notable aspect of this album, being both simplistic yet impactful mostly dealing with the themes of loss and love, managing to not go over the line towards being cheesy or over-dramatic. I'm not normally a lyrics person but there are albums where they do become a positive and this is one of them.

Whilst there are exceptions like in the song My Lovely where the guitar drives and takes the lead during specific parts of the song, the guitar and drums for the most part take the backseat throughout. Overall they do it's job providing a good backing ambience to the gorgeous piano and vocals. This is however sometimes a detriment to the band as whilst there are songs with fantastic vocal patterns which grab you like Lost at Sea which almost did away with the guitar entirely or other soothing ballads such as Brightly Wounded which in particular has some absolutely stunning piano in it's conclusion, other songs fail to stick out and instead fall into the trap of using similar and almost repetitive hooks.

This for me stops Room Noises from being outstanding. Having said that, this is a very enjoyable album and achieves what I think it said out to be. A definitive recommendation for those who enjoy Indie Pop.

7/10


Recommended Tracks:

Memories
Brightly Wound
Lost at Sea
 

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Manic Pixie Dream Girl
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3,590 Posts
Re: Music Club - Week 3

Simply splendid! A marvelous thing from beginning to end! In a strange sort of way, it reminds me of the ethereal realms of Kate Bush. Room Noises is filled with fantastical imagery, enchanting melodies, and a peculiar sense of fancy. The production is rather slick and the vocals by the DuPree sisters are just beautiful. This is one that the Phantom shall be listening to again very soon.

Favorite Tracks:

Memories
Telescope Eyes
Golly Sandra
Brightly Wound
Trolley Wood


8.5 Cloaks of Levitation out of 10.

 
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