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God Is An Astronaut - God Is An Astronaut CD (album) cover


God Is An Astronaut


Post Rock/Math rock

3.32 | 59 ratings

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Easy Money
Special Collaborator
Honorary Collaborator / Retired Admin
3 stars On this 2008 release God is an Astronaut stands on the verge of greatness, but they can't seem to shake the limitations of their chosen 'post-rock' genre. Like so many excellent modern progressive rock bands Astronaut needs to make that leap of faith that carries them into a more diverse and inventive musical path devoid of pre-determined formulas such as math-rock, neo-prog, various metal genres or post-rock.

Its certain these guys know how to set up a nice melancholy chord sequence during the verse and then blast that sequence with full majestic power for the chorus. Their melodies and chords are excellent, but the repetition of the loud then soft formula gets a little predictable after a while. Their whole compositional setup reminds me of when I was teaching several teenage guitar students during Nirvana's Teen Spirit ride on the hit charts. I believe the constant repetition of that song on the radio forever etched the soft verse/loud chorus structure into the receptive minds of our youth. A particular group of my students who could barely play the three chords to Wild Thing prepared a major opus for the school music assembly by playing those three chords very softly with mostly bass for four reps and then blasting the same three chords very loudly for four more reps. This went on and on for this particular school performance and the kids in the audience loved it. Thus post-rock was born.

To their credit though, Astronaut's dramatic choruses hearken back to the glory days of progressive rock, a feeling they enhance by occasionally adding some string synth for that massive faux Mellotron effect. Likewise, their melancholy verses carry a lot of emotional impact and occasionally channel Eno's world weary 70s ambient rock. Eno's presence is strongly felt here, but not so much as fellow Irish rockers U2. The likeness is so strong that on some tracks you half way expect Bono to come bellowing over the dramatic changes. Certainly guitarist Torsten Kinsella has picked up a lot from U2's highly original (at one time) Edge.

On the chorus to Shores of Orion you can almost hear something that sounds like a synth or guitar solo. Now there's a great idea, why doesn't someone just rip a solo now and again. It would also help if Astronaut would change up their predictable song structures occasionally as well. There is a very talented band here that is restricting themselves with the rules of their genre, but if you are looking for damn good post-rock, here it is.

Easy Money | 3/5 |


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