Crystal Antlers – Tentacles

Crystal Antlers – Tentacles

http://www.konkurrent.nl/ http://www.touchandgorecords.com/

 

You know Incendiary saw this lot recently (on the strength of their fabulous EP) and was mighty impressed. And when we got the LP in the post, there was a veritable rush to stick it on the old stereo…

 

Oh how expectations can be deflated…

 

What sounded thrilling live sounds pedestrian on record. It’s such a shame. Maybe our expectations were too high, but this is a very one-paced record. Three are some magic things here though; the opening left-right of instrumental Painless Sleep and screamathon Dust is such a great beginning, full of raw power and energy. And Time Erased is a cracker too, with the vaunted sound-swirl (and the much used low tempo refrain) in full evidence.

 

The problem is after this, the tracks really start to blend into each other. Maybe it’s the constant full-throttle vocal attack (which is bereft of light and shade at times) or maybe it’s the way that the music is so full, texturally. It really seems as if the band have backed their sound into a corner and are scared to give it any room to manoeuvre… it’s too rich.

 

You know there’s something interesting going on, (Glacier, for example, has a lot of promise to be a completely different track to the one it is), but I wonder if anyone’s been given the authority to coax it out of the band in the studio…

 

The most interesting track on the LP is the last, Several Tongues, which sees the band finally allowing a sonic landscape of genuine psychedelic weirdness and interest, so when the inevitable crashing organ vocal combo assault comes crashing down, it has somewhere to land.

 

Hang loose lads…

 

Words: Richard Foster