Friday, 5 December 2008

Explosions In The Sky - The Rescue (2005)

The Rescue is a unique record and project in a world where music is increasingly dominated by pressuring labels, pandering bands and consumers for whom an album is only as good as it's first listen. Recorded at, guitarist/bassist, Michael James' Austin house, The Rescue is the band's attempt at compiling a whole album of new material in two weeks, with the first 8 days dedicated to specific songs and the remaining time to mastering those tracks, a task which was also done by the band. With what sounds like a tiny amount of time, especially for a band who claim "it can take us months and months and months to write even a song", many artists would struggle without the tricks of their super producer and session orchestra but Explosions In The Sky still manage to produce something that is interesting, captivating and above all, refreshing.

Of course there are highlights and my personal favourite is the drum and bass led "Day Five" which is the band's attempt at writing "the saddest dance record in the world". The eventual sound is not so much one of sadness but more one of optimism and growth as the initial groove is layered upon with the addition of trademark guitar work and a simple, but effective, piano part. The band claim that this track has the most individual instruments they had ever recorded on a track to date but by no means does the song sound overdone as the contrary is true. The clarity of all parts is what makes this song sound so good.



Other highlights include "Day Two" where the band did the old switcheroo and changed instruments as well as the very odd choice of adding vocals! This results in a classic Explosions style build up coupled with some haunting choral vocals, very much like those heard on the Panda Bear album from last year.

This album is a chance for the band to take risks and experiment in genre which, while different, is often badly done by many bands. What Explosions In The Sky have achieved here is to break down the mystique's of song writing and produce a mini-album which is, not outstanding, but a very fun and interesting listen.

And there is more, it's all available for free here!

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