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Perhaps - Volume One CD (album) cover




Post Rock/Math rock

3.97 | 107 ratings

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4 stars The first seven minutes of Perhaps' Volume One is some of the most challenging, frantic, and rewarding music I have heard this year. To think that three guys recorded this live in a basement only adds to the impressive quality of the performances, which last for a full 37 minutes and cover a myriad of styles and techniques. The main point of reference is Post- Rock, but not necessarily in the vein of GY!BE or Mogwai (that will come later); I am most reminded of Don Caballero and An Endless Sporadic, two groups I quite admire and it appears Perhaps does too. If I had to sum up Volume One in five words? Umphrey's McGee meets Mr. Bungle.

The intro to Close To The Edge is recalled in the first two minutes, but the next five establish Perhaps as a new power-player in the Math Rock scene. Immediately, the virtuousic playing of Jim Haney (bass), Sean McDermott (guitar), and Don Taylor (drums) is on display: But don't expect any Rush or ELP from this power trio; Perhaps never sits on one riff or pattern too long so as to allow it to stagnate, yet the transitions are fluid and not jarring. After the initial onslaught, we are treated to a guitar solo, Drum/Sax solo, and finally a trumpet solo about 20 minutes in. This is the only section that drags for me personally, as the five minute trumpet solo wears a bit too long before it morphs into a space-rock jam. Sean McDermott does not recall David Gilmour however...his Frippian figures are raunchy and unusual in this context, which I really appreciate. By the 27 minute mark the group whips out another furious run of head-spinning notes which makes you wonder "how are they STILL doing this?" Finally, the last 5 minutes pay homage to heroes Godspeed You! Black Emperor and Mogwai, and end Volume One on a more traditional note.

My only complaint of Volume One has nothing to do with the music itself, but its delivery: The only physical format of this release is on cassette. While the retro appeal and indie aesthetic is endearing, I have no way to play the silly thing. Sure, I can burn a CD to listen to in the car, or put it on the iPod, but give me the genuine article. I know this is just a fundamental difference between Gen-Xers such as myself and Gen-Yers as Perhaps appear to be, but it is worth noting. What I have no reservations about is the live performance capabilities of the band, which I look forward to if they ever tour the Midwest. You have absolutely nothing to lose by streaming/downloading Volume One, and I highly recommend doing so right now.

coasterzombie | 4/5 |


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