Sunday, December 11, 2011

Album Review: 65daysofstatic - Silent Running

Album Rating: A
65daysofstatic has been pretty active as of late, what with the Heavy Sky EP, and We Were Exploding Anyway both being released last year. With this year came a dynamic work for the band that started as a fundraiser through Indie Gogo, and came to fruition through the support of loyal fans everywhere. Silent Running is a testament to the band's new direction, and this change is not something we should reject - rather, we should hold it close, cherish it, and admire this brilliance 65 has graciously handed down to us. The album feels so natural for the band, yet has many different tastes, ones that have evolved and matured since the likes of The Destruction Of Small Ideas. Where there was once angst, static, and anger, there is now creativity, fluidity, and feeling.

I feel that the only proper way to start to look at this album is with the opener. "Overture" is quintessential 65days, and although it seems a fairly short track, it actually is a perfect summary of who they are and what they can accomplish. The piano and the strings overshadow the theme of the song beautifully, introducing a main theme and leaving plenty of room for the song to grow. And grow it does - with the addition of crash cymbals for added effect, tom for driving force, and synths ablaze and attuned to a gradual crescendo, the song builds a massive wave of excitement, layering electronic sounds, synthetic vibrations, and powerful support from the drums, all under the commanding melody of the piano, which dictates a passionate swell and a silent, solo fade into the next track. Brilliantly concise, and very absolute, the album could not have been introduced better.

"Burial Scene" may be the most moving track on the album. It begins in a melancholy demeanor, with only chords and a cascading melody line in the piano, but a light humming supports it, and a clean guitar comes in to change the mood, replacing an oppressive sadness with an airy hopefulness, with light, articulate support from the snare drum. The carefree moment disappears with each of the other instruments, though, as the piano takes over once again, moving the feeling from joyful and liberated to thoughtful and introspective. The effectiveness of creating a repeatable line in the right hand of the piano and iterating it over and again, above different chords that convey variable feelings, is completely wonderful. The listener clings onto each tonal change the piano makes and clings onto every note, unable to get enough. Finally, the other instruments are brought back, and the feeling of holding onto each keystroke is reapplied, the joy from before intensified, and as the song fades, 65 releases the listener in a calm, reassured bliss.

65daysofstatic has shown the world what they can do, and what's possible for them, on this album. With the main concepts of the album being space, exploration, extinction of life, and sacrifice, the band does a brilliant job of covering every important point musically, and expanding them to the point of sheer reverie, to the listener's delight. There really is so much to enjoy on this album that only pretentious floosies that happen to be diehard fans of everything 65 released prior to 2005 would have any negative comments on the soundtrack. It's absolutely worth a listen, and carries a lot of individual meaning behind each song. You might draw something different from it than I did, but I'm sure we can both agree that it's a fine piece of writing.

You can check out a track or two from the album on the band's website.

Track Listing:
1) Overture
2) Space Theme
3) The Announcement
4) Safe Distancing
5) The Scattered Disk
6) Burial Scene
7) Broken Ship Ruse
8) Surgery
9) Space Montage
10) Rantaloupe
11) Finale

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