Deserted Avenues - Hope
- Artist: Deserted Avenues
- EP: Hope
- Year of Release: 2011
- ME Rating:
- Reviewed by: solitaryman on 2011-12-22
As a genre of music, your guess is probably as good as mine as to what "Post-Rock" totally conveys in it's title. I have come to understand it as a more fundamentally-written form of shoegaze, where repetition of the verse aspect of verse-bridge-chorus dynamic creates a heightened sense of expectation for the bridge, and the extended bridge makes the eventual crescendo (or "chorus", but not in the classic sense) of the track the ultimate highlight. From what I've read of Sweden's Deserted Avenues, they are considered "Post-Rock". I, frankly, don't see it. I can easily hear how they're influenced by bands such as Explosions in the Sky and Mogwai, but it's simply not the same. Their EP, Hope, contains four abrupt, disjointed pieces of ideas that would typically go into a successful track of "Post-Rock". It's like a set of blueprints that was cut up and thrown hastily back together; certain pieces look like something, but overall it's a mess.
The track "Hope" really gets the intro right, sounding a bit like Red Sparowes as it softly builds up, and when it breaks it really tries to hold together. But the reverb overlapping the guitar, at this point, is quite annoying in it's pitch. And this lasts throughout most of the song, a mistake that shouldn't have been overlooked as it kills an otherwise decent piece. Also, the vocals which show up here and on the lesser "I Never Wrote A Back Letter Home" (broken english is to be expected) are suspect at best. "I Looked Into Your Eyes And Did Nothing" is pure EITS worship, and may signal a direction for the band going forward as it's certainly representative of Deserted Avenues at their most focused. Despite some rough transitions, it manages to mix some clever hooks into the dual guitar harmonies. "Sunbeam" flows fairly well, and is much more focused on turning a memorable guitar lead than actually being a song proper. It does showcase where the talents of the band lie, namely in melding interesting guitar passages with a Cure-sy back section of active bass and midline percussion. It's generic at it's core, but generic doesn't have to be a bad thing in a world where too many overstep their bounds and forget to find their limits.
Deserted Avenues have a future, but in order to open it up to a wider audience, they should scale back the effects, kill the vocals altogether and focus on their strengths. Much of the album is truly memorable and enjoyable, while others are a little mind-boggling in contrast. I can't find much info about the band or how long they've been at this, but my guess is that they're young and eager to express, via their own creativity and skill, how influential certain sounds have been on them. This is a natural process, and if it proceeds naturally, we should soon hear bigger and better things. In the meantime, this is worth a listen just so the promise is given room to take hold in your consciousness.
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