Icarus The Owl

Icarus The Owl

Written by: HES on 28/02/2014 14:39:42

One of the hottest albums on our incoming promo lists was "Icarus The Owl", which I snatched right in front of TL, yet by first listen it was obvious that this was indeed a record worth fighting for. With this third album Icarus The Owl is one of the bands to watch when it comes to technical, funky, pop-core like Emarosa or Dance Gavin Dance. Icarus The Owl's frontman Joey Rubenstein's voice is not unlike Jonny Craig, respectively current and former vocalist of the two bands.

"Ignore Check Engine Lights" is a fast-paced, funky song with excellent detail work in both construction of the song itself and elements like guitars and drums on the level of - dare I say it - Emery. Same goes for "The Monster Within" that also includes a funky samba-like beat. You wouldn't think such elements mix, but they surely do, when it's Rob Bernknopf on drums. "The Pharmacist" is almost like Muse meets post-hardcore. "Input. Time. Destruct"'s funk post-hardcore is even reminiscent of Panic! At the Disco in a more relevant setting and not as heavily caricatured. Common for all of the songs is a completely insane amount of intricacy; unconventional thinking wrapped around a melodic core leaves you with an inspired feeling. The tangents the band plays on are always on the edge of seeming outdated or at least like the album could've fit in with the wave of hybrid-bands a couple of years ago, but then they smack you in the face with a pop-punk power chorus on "Input. Time. Destruct" for instance. That’s not outdated. In general the mood of the album is also in the more "happy" bracket rather than the standard depressed soundscape. Rubenstein almost sings with a smile in his voice. It seems they have taken inspiration from pop-punk on this point as well and it makes you able to listen to the album without sinking into a pit of gloom.

Although I love that the band are trying all these new things out, it also gives the album a bit of a chaotic feeling. Thirteen songs are maybe a bit much to expect your audience to swallow when they are all so very packed with impressions. The energy is constantly very high where you may see more contrasts on other albums in the same genre. I'm not sure if it's a plus or a minus, but I would've liked to hear something more ballad'ish or slow just to see the band's range. However. Who really needs range when you're so absolutely fantastic at what you do? I will continue listening to this album and still find new aspects, tweeks and riffs to adore. “Icarus The Owl” is one of the best records I am going to review in 2014, I’m sure of it.


Download: Input. Time. Destruct, Flint and Steel, The Monster Within, The Pharmacist
For The Fans Of: Dance Gavin Dance, Emarosa, Emery
Listen: Facebook

Release Date 07.02.2014

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