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Wolves In Aramid - Beacons CD (album) cover

BEACONS

Wolves In Aramid

 

Post Rock/Math rock

3.00 | 1 ratings

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Finnforest
Special Collaborator
Honorary Collaborator
3 stars Music for a breezy afternoon

Hailing from Edmonds Washington, Wolves in Aramid is the musical partnership of Dylan Faltisco and Bryan Bulmer. With noted influences of Oceansize, Radiohead, Mogwai, Circa Survive, and The Dear Hunter, they formed in 2010. In 2012 they released their first EP "Obsidian" and their latest EP from summer 2014 is called "Beacons."

Amusingly to me they call both of their albums "EPs"...since "Beacons" clocks in at 40 minutes I'm surprised they don't consider it a proper album. Maybe it's a generational thing now in the age of 75 minute CDs but "Beacons" certainly satisfies as an album to me. On their website they say they "like to write lush, interesting, and unique songs" and I think "Beacons" succeeds on that front. The music is quite lush and beautiful and despite having few weapons in the arsenal (guitar/bass and drums), they manage to be interesting without keyboards or a flamboyant vocalist.

Most post-rock is atmospheric and emotional and this describes Wolves as well. Their 5-8 minute long tracks are comprised generally of two guitars (both guys play guitar) playing off of each other, mostly clean single notes or chords with occasional feedback, distortion, and effects. The drumming comes and goes as needed when things need to rock out. The title track opens in gorgeous fashion with acoustic guitar and Faltisco's dreamy/distant vocal (there's a bit of singing, not much) before they launch into a harder rocking section. It's dramatic and bold sounding, in my view the best piece on the album. "Plus the Monkey" also gets a bit funky and sounds more in line with stuff like Oceansize, as did "Sails". Much of the rest tends to be pretty mellow, occasionally subdued, but always tasteful and enjoyable. I love the moods they capture here and there although there is certainly some room for improvement. I really enjoy hearing two guitars weaving and reacting to each other, especially when there is ample space for them to be heard properly. This is why I love post-rock and am always surprised that it is so often ignored by progressive rock fans. For me the songwriting of "Beacons" conjured outdoor/elemental images more than typical post-rock angst/darkness, a feeling which would seem to be backed up by the beautiful outdoor images of their videos (two of which I will be posting to their page.)

"Beacons" feels somewhat modest in its intentions and indeed the duo seem to enjoy being self-deprecating on their FB page. But I think the album shows more than enough talent and potential to take things to a higher level in the future, should they choose. It's a lovely work of contemplative instrumental (mostly) rock that went by very quickly each time I played. 3 1/2 stars perhaps though not quite 4.

Finnforest | 3/5 |

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