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The Pax Cecilia - Nouveau CD (album) cover


The Pax Cecilia

Experimental/Post Metal

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3 stars The other side of the Pax Cecilia...

This album wasn't added until a couple months after their addition to the PA, therefore very few people here including the owners of Blessed are the bonds even know of this albums existence. This is a shame cause it really is a great, brutal album, with influences that you are in blessed, but are a little more smoothly, and aren't controlling the songs. I'd venture to say that I like this album better.

With so many influences the Pax cecilia takes on, there is one that dominates this album, HARDCORE. I love this genre of metal, it's abrasive, it's technical, and it's got an emotional edge, sadly I can only listen to a little at a time before needing to turn on some sigur ros or something before my head explodes. Nouveau manages to somewhat balances the sheer brutality and the softer more brutal parts though, leaving you with a somewhat more functional album, and if you read my blessed review, you know that's a big deal to me. Most of the time the album fluctuates between really soft post rock arpeggios, with barely hummed words, and brutal twin guitar lead lines, and an extremely agitated scream, very little in between. This brings up some pros's and cons. Con, lack of diversity, though there are some nice piano jams in the instrumental sections, there really is very little outside the hardcore shell. Pro, keeps you on edge, and is very satisfying when you want some down to earth brutal music. One other not so good thing is that there is an extreme lack in clean vocals, which is a shame, cause his voice was so good in in the next album, but don't get me wrong there is some cleanness.

Along with all of this, there is a lack of experimental instrumentation that they will acquire in the next album, but strangely enough, I don't miss them... Last, the recording quality is a little below par, the vocals are a little under mixed, and the snare is a little over muffled. Aside from all of these a very solid album, three and a half stars.

Report this review (#165213)
Posted Thursday, March 27, 2008 | Review Permalink
Cesar Inca
Honorary Collaborator
4 stars The Pax Cecilia is one of the most interesting new bands situated in that particular branch of the post-rock movement that some have entitled post-metal: that is, the use of atmospherics and psychedelic vibrations in a context where the rock elements arise from the shocking tensions of experimental metal (death, black, speed, whatever?). Even though the post-rock and post-metal labels themselves tend to be vague, and even disowned by many bands that usually get tagged under these descriptions, the fact remains that The Pax Cecilia has been offering very interesting music in the avant-garde areas of contemporary experimental rock. Their sophomore album "Blessed Are The Bonds" has deservedly received praises from all over the world, and from what we can hear in their debut release "Nouveau", talent and energy were crucial elements in this band's music from the very start. The album kicks off with a beautiful string duet, soon joined by soft guitar arpeggios ? this starting point is 'Opening Monologue'. Once 'Beneath Every Powerline There Is Still A Graveyard' gets started, things get intensified in an electrifying demonstration that soon gets rough and aggressive. In this way, an alternation between languid passages and darkish explosions settles down the track's main body in an agile play of contrasts. 'An Aurora: The Crux Candide' brings a more consistent focus, bearing a compositional framework rooted in sober, dense textures: the rhythmic scheme evolves in a pertinently moderate fashion. 'MDCCLXXV' is the interlude that reiterates the introspective magic of the opening monologue, but it is just an interlude, let's not forget it. The fury of 'Fluorescence A.D. 1429: Burning The Body Of Joan Of Arc, Or Cupid', cleverly alternated with ethereal slow passages, states a splendid sonic portrait of uneasy creepiness, as if exploring the inner world of a ghost who hides an inscrutable secret. 'Phosphorescence A.D. 79: Burying The City Of Pompeii, Or Psyche' follows right away in this road of creepiness, starting with chamber moods, then evolving solidly into a well-ordained alternation of mysterious subtleties and raw rocking flourishes. At one point, some flute lines remind me of the main theme from Polanski's movie "Repulsion". 'Phosphorescence A.D. 79' is, in my opinion, the most majestic example of The Pax Cecilia's core essence in this album. 'England: Theatre Of The Air', on the other hand, delivers the album's ultimate climax, reaching a magnificent pinnacle of thanatical cruelty: mentally picture a hybrid of SGM and early Kayo Dot, and you'll get to the point I'm trying to make here. Finally, 'A Denouement' closes down the album. Starting with a piano motif that states an evocative stance, the path is set for the elaboration of a more expanded demonstration of sound: but in this case we don't meet an explosion of nightmarish gloom but an explicit intensification of the underlining melancholy. Even though I feel that this piece should have evolved into a more bombastic ambience, still it works fine as a clever closure for a very interesting album ? "Nouveau" is a declaration of principles for higher learning in the world of experimental rock, and so, The PC guys are graduates with high grades. 3.80 stars for this one.
Report this review (#245939)
Posted Friday, October 23, 2009 | Review Permalink

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