Circle Takes The Square

Rites of Initiation EP

Written by: DR on 01/11/2011 20:06:04

Circle Takes The Square's debut, "As The Roots Undo", combined elements from post-hardcore, screamo, metal and grindcore, to name a few, and was met positive critical acclaim - even ending up on a few End of Decade lists across the web. That was seven years ago. Seven years since this band released anything. Later this month, the band will release their second album, "Decompositions: Volume 1", which will be a part of a larger project. In August, Circle Takes The Square also released a first taster of what's to be expected of "Decompositions: Volume 1" by releasing the first chapter of that album, "Rites of Initiation".

Trying to succinctly describe the sound of Circle Takes The Square is difficult enough in itself, but when compared to their debut "Rites of Initiation" isn't as raw, chaotic or frantic. Believe it not, but Circle Takes The Square are now calmer - though not necessarily calm. Where "As The Roots Undo" came screeching out of the blocks with "Same Shade As Concrete", the opener here, "Enter By The Narrow Gates", has a strong post-metal, drone-y backbone that the band uses as they sluggishly build towards the dramatic climax through call/response vocal work and claustrophobic metal-chords juxtaposed with melodic guitar lines. That song flows into "Spirit Narrative", which is the shortest song at just under three minutes. Typically, it is a short, demented burst of overlapping screamed vocals and technical guitar-work, but it works particularly as it ties in with the following track and album centrepiece "Way Of Ever-Branching Paths", forming a memorable one-two punch. Beginning by continuing with the thread that its predecessor gives it, "Way Of Ever-Branching Paths" begins as raucous, dirty and unrestrained as any CTTS song so far. It briefly settles into a period of quiet, but it inevitably ends in an absolute free-for-all of screams, shouts, cries, dissonant chords and powerful drumming.

Even as the album approaches its closer, "The Ancestral Other Side", there is not a moment of silence. Despite how messy it all may seem, this is a carefully constructed and cohesive work, and it's that careful construct with which the members compose their music that has always set Circle Takes The Square apart. I have very little idea what Circle Takes The Square are actually shrieking about, but I don't really care. While it's not going to win over cynics, if "Rites of Initiation" is any indication of what the full-length is going to be like then fans may suddenly forget about the seven years it has taken to arrive.


Download: Way Of Ever-Branching Paths, Enter By The Narrow Gates
For The Fans of: The Number Twelve Looks Like You, Pg.99, City of Caterpillar
Listen: Bandcamp

Release Date 23.08.2011
Gatepost Recordings

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