Greener Pastures!

Written by: TL on 17/08/2010 22:42:55

Hands up all who wouldn't mind if the world had more bands like Norma Jean and The Chariot. Right, you people with your hands in the air. You should get this album, "Greener Pastures!" by Octaves, and that is as long as this review really needs to be. Bleak soundscapes? Check! Dissonant, ringing guitars crashing into each other? Check! Techy drum patterns? Check! Monstrous yet intelligible vocals? Check, and double check! All the essentials are in order! But! Does Octaves have something of their own to offer?

The answer is yes, they do. First and foremost, they have a production that is flat out stellar compared to what you normally hear from new bands in this genre. Everything on "Greener Pastures!" is razor sharp, and this helps the listener to not only make sense of the rollercoaster-roars delivered by both singer and gang-choirs, but also to appreciate the entropic scales provided by the guitars. Throw in morphing song-structures, ominous female backing vocals on occasions, odd samples ("meanwhile, in Metropolis" .. what!?) and transitions that will generally make you feel like you're in an asylum and... Well, didn't you really have me already when I wrote "The Chariot" ?

Okay, so yeah, Octaves sound a lot like The Chariot, but they do come into their own by being faster, busier and slightly less raw sounding. Now everyone who reads Rockfreaks.net regularly should know that I am generally sick to death of hardcore - I admit I can't for the life of me remember what made me sign up to review this record - however, I do not regret it, because Octaves have seemed to me like an unusually diverse, ambitious and proficient specimen. Have my skepticism in mind though, when you see my grading, and know that if you, unlike me, are generally a believer in this kind of music, then adding a half point or so probably is not at all unreasonable.

Download: Be Angry At The Sun For Setting On A Set Of Sons
For The Fans Of: Norma Jean, The Chariot, UnderOATH (at their least melodic)
Listen: myspace.com/octaves

Release Date 24.04.2010
Hotfoot Records

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