Release DetailsLABEL Deepsend
RELEASED ON 3/26/2005
posted on 3/2005 By:
With the incredible success of bands like Isis, Cult of Luna, and Swarm of the Lotus, it seems like there's a doomy band with a goliath sound popping up in every corner of the globe. They say imitation is the greatest form of flattery, and while the new formation of such bands is a godsend for many of us, how much is too much? I'm afraid we'll have to keep waiting to find out the answer to that one. Enter Switzerland's Vancouver (wha?), Deepsend's addition to the recent new roster of initially Neurosis derivative/inspired acts. Comprised of members of Impure Wilhelmina, Iscariote, and Unfold - this isn't a motley of nobodies or clueless kids attempting to hop on a bandwagon.
Beginning with the ringing and clashing dissonance of "Maraschino", Vancouver introduce themselves with a strong sense of rhythm and a penchant for clarity and solemn breaks. Keeping their songs at an unexcessive mid-pace and comparatively short in duration when placed side by side with other bands of the genre, they successfully dodge tediousness with a few tenacious and bleak melodies. Their press sheet citing of Knut and Keelhaul are founded as soon as "The Ninth Floor" hits, possessing a agitated and thunderous haste which leads into a deliberate throbbing before picking it's hulking and convulsive mass up off the floor. Alleviating the overall bulkiness of the material on The Moment, Vancouver's massive sepulchral sound is broken up and quarantined by shorter instrumental ambient passages like "Damocles" and the foreboding cellos heard on "Exosphere". A mentionable aspect of the album is that it's more adrift and fluid - the lack of focus at times actually proves to be a strength. With the inclusion of backing female vocals and some of the slightly progressive guitarwork being brought into the front of the mix, there's a softer edge to the music. "The Portrait," the ninth and final track, keeps with the same structure and heavy leanings, but the clean and pleasant vocals are initially hindering as they're a marked change from the thick bellows of before. After a short period of adjustment, I'm convinced that the despondent feel is actually annunciated by this subtle change, and The Moment ends with an aura of completeness.
I can safely say that Vancouver are a band that I find have a lot to offer, not in terms of staggering originality or breathtaking concept, but meaning that they're a band who produce strong and satisfying songs. If you've never had the patience for any of the previously mentioned bands, there's nothing here for you; look elsewhere. And even though I've found the new records by Buried Inside and Cult Of Luna to be the official ushers of this sluggish and weighty league of bands, it's good to know that the folks over in Switzerland are placing a close eye to this style and producing just as worthy competition as any other country.
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