Sunday, October 6, 2013

Maumelle - 1997

01. Exposed
02. Three Thirty
03. Rest
04. Thankful
05. These Walls
06. The Only Way Out

I want to keep a reputation for full disclosure while writing for this site, so in that interest I'm going to say right out of the gate that this style of screamo/emo isn't really my thing. That said, this is executed really well, and fans of this style will find a lot to like here. The opener 'Exposed' leaves the vocalist just that - exposed. The track starts out with what I am interpreting as guitar volume swells (please correct me if this is incorrect). A clean guitar a picks out some somber sounding chords for a few bars before the vocalist speaks his lyrics, not totally unlike recent offerings from Old Gray. The vocals grow in intensity until they are almost screamed, though the instruments stay sparse, which creates a cool dynamic. By the time that the noodly guitar at the beginning of 'Three Thirty' kicks in, you're fairly aware of what you're going to get here, though instead of off key warbling, the vocalist jumps right into shouting. It's a little strange at first to hear such intense screaming over calm guitar riffs, but it eventually settles into the norm and doesn't seem so out of place. 'Rest' breaks up the pacing of the album with another introspective picked guitar and spoken word piece. They get really close to overdoing it with the spoken word stuff, however the last three songs are largely intense and feature full instrumentation, creating a suitable balance for the EP.

Reviewed by Justin.

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