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Russian Circles - Enter CD (album) cover


Russian Circles


Post Rock/Math rock

4.14 | 177 ratings

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Post/Math Rock Team
4 stars Russian Circles are a Post Rock band from the important Post Rock city of Chicago, but their music contains elements of Math Rock and Post Metal as well. This is the only album I have heard from them so far so I can't compare other albums, but on their debut Enter they are mostly in Post Rock territory. Being a trio of guitar / bass / drums they have a fuller sound due to guitarist Mike Sullivan's use of looping and other effects. Sometimes he can sound like three guitarists playing at once. The drummer is very good and the bass sometimes sounds like a guitar, not just playing 'bass' parts.

The album opens with the faded in arpeggios of "Carpe," a song you can listen to here on PA. After a little bit of heaviness the song goes into a section with African-styled snare-rim oriented drumming that some Math bands like to use. This section is fairly calm and melodic. Slowly it turns into a louder and faster section with some disco style hi-hat accents in the drumming. Later on some melodic bass playing as the mood is atmospheric before getting louder and more typical Post Rock sounding. "Micah" starts out very Mogwai sounding with the arpeggios and the drumming. Later on some tom-tom centred drumming and more melodic arpeggios. Again it gets more Mogwai sounding when it gets loud and heavy. Some fast hi-hat and bass playing before more guitar arpeggios show up.

"Death Rides A Horse" stands out from the other songs by its sheer intensity and heaviness. This song is much closer to metal and math rock. Everytime I hear the beginning of this song I am reminded of Iron Maiden. Metalheads would love a song such as this. Love the scratching of the guitar strings, it just adds to the overall effect of the song. Around 1 1/2 minutes goes into a bouncy New Wave style beat while rhythmic bass and math-y guitars work around it. After 3 minutes goes into a straight metal riff including some guitar runs. I like the drumbeat near the end; actually there is nothing but drums for awhile before the track ends on a loud, distorted note.

After the intense "Death..." we get the more subdued title track. The beginning of this track reminds me of Explosions In The Sky. Turns more rhythmic with great drumming later. Around 5 minutes builds up to a great part with a very muscular and aggressive bass sound. Some lovely Mellotron flute ends the song. That was a surprise the first time I heard this album. Pounding tom-toms segues the title track into "You Already Did." This song is more in the Mogwai/EITS vein but the drumming is a little more complex than either band.

Album closer "New Macabre" has maybe the most interesting drumming on the album. It varies a lot. The guitar and bass interplay (and drumming too in fact) sounds a lot like Tool towards the end. A very good album and recommended to fans of instrumental rock music. This will get a 3.5 from me but I'll round it up to 4 stars.

zravkapt | 4/5 |


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