The Early November

In Currents

Written by: PP on 21/11/2012 21:32:15

Despite their status as a cult band within the indie/emo movement, it may come as a surprise to many that The Early November have only two albums in their back catalogue prior to the release of "In Currents", their first new album in six years. Their first EP "For All Of This" and debut full-length "The Room's Too Cold" are both considered to be seminal albums within the genre, which goes a long way for explaining why there's so much hype surrounding every TEN release or any of the associated side projects. But it doesn't tell the whole story.

The key reason why TEN have achieved remarkable success is their immensely talented frontman Arthur 'Ace' Enders. Not only is he a multi-instrumentalist (guitar, keyboard), but he owns one of the best voices within the genre, which is displayed on a grandstand throughout this album. His high pitch emo melodies are impeccably well executed, but he's equally solid in his lower and mid range singing, drawing close parallels to Mae's Dave Elkins in both style and sound. In practice, it means that he opts for a varied approach, where some songs are lo-fi produced on purpose and feature but an acoustic guitar and Ace's strong vocals as contrasting elements to one another, while others are smooth, indie-flavored emo rockers leaning on alt rock more than singer-songwriter, where his voice is flying sky-high above much bigger soundscapes. A quick listen to a track like "Tell Me Why" or indeed "Frayed In Doubt" leaves me no choice but to call his singing incredible. He throws in just a little bit of strain at both ends of his range to make it sound like he means it, and to add that extra bit of charisma that makes him stick out from so many other like-minded vocalists. The lyrics have always been his specialty, too, so that's an added bonus right there.

Otherwise, the band's balladic approach to indie-flavored emo is a style many from Mae to The Starting Line, Copeland and Say Anything have tried, but if you ask me, only Mae are comparable to TEN in terms of ambition and flawless execution (although the sophomore TEN album was a triple-album that was way too long for its own good). TEN take a rather simplistic style and call it their own, and define how it is meant to be played through a heartfelt and lovable sound. It's been almost a decade since the release of their seminal material, but "In Currents" shows the band still has it in them to impress.


Download: Tell Me Why, Call Of The Bells, Frayed In Doubt, In Currents
For the fans of: Dashboard Confessional, Mae, The Starting Line, Say Anything
Listen: Facebook

Release date 10.07.2012
Rise Records

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