Falloch - This Island, Our Funeral review


43 users:
Band: Falloch
Album: This Island, Our Funeral
Release date: September 2014

01. Tòrradh
02. For Life
03. For Uir
04. Brahan
05. -
06. I Shall Build Mountains
07. Sanctuary

Scottish band Falloch have finally released their sophomore album, three years after their highly decorated debut Where Distant Spirits Remain. Main song writer and vocalist Andy Marshall left the band during this period, the void filled with a trio of capable musicians and a new sound. A straight-forward and desensitized atmospheric approach takes the place of most of the "gazy" and folk metal elements. I love the band's new direction and This Island, Our Funeral is an impressive piece of music that will hold its own against the Dustwalker's and The Serpent & the Sphere's of the genre.

Musically, This Island, Our Funeral consists of rigorous samples of majestic and temporal pieces of climatic music interwoven with ambient and aerial interludes. Generally even-paced, this uncluttered, subterranean approach nets a naturalistic and earthy result. It easily creates an intense introspection of imagery from their native Scottish homeland landscapes and ocean-scanning panoramic haze. Beautiful melodic chords and riffs are at the forefront and slightly gravid pinnacles mark an "epic" type of listening experience without ever resorting to bombastic or heavy-handedness type of structures. Post rock/metal elements are deeply rooted in the build, blackened metal can be diligently heard and doom metal will wave a hand once in a while but inevitably this album's sticking point is it's ability to dodge one specific genre tag. The musical styles are smooth in their transitions, going almost totally unperceived by the listener. Beautiful piano, subtle electronic respites and dreamy tremolo guitar sequences entrench the album in misty, tranquil waters.

The boldest change in this release are the vocals. New member and guitarist Tony Dunn handles the lead singing and I must say they are a thankful upgrade from Andy Marshall. They work really well with the foreshadowing and desolate scene emitted from the music, utilizing an almost progressive metal style - soaring high into the clouds when the energy surges and quiescent and low key when the attitude of the songs shifts to a more graceful pace. His voice may not appease everyone but for me it's well rounded enough to coincide nicely with music that has diverse spaces and in-betweens. The production, done by Jaime Gomez Arellano (Ghost B.C., Cathedral, Ulver), is an enrichment from their previous work evident by more detailed musical arrangements and polished calibrations. In fact, the quality is very deliberate and definitive for music of this kind.

This Island, Our Funeral necessitates well-written, tidy compositions unique in feeling and sensitivity that utilize an expansive backdrop of styles and sounds. It makes the listening experience grounded and even more engaging and intimate than it could have been otherwise. Falloch have started to unlock their potential by creating an album that leaves me in utter serenity. An intensive and absorbing experience, elements of the music both contrast with and complement one another in one of the most fluid displays of creative songwriting I've listened to in a while. Mood swings and a roller coaster of emotions are what I like most when I take in atmospheric music and this soulful album delivers.

Rating breakdown
Performance: 9
Songwriting: 9
Originality: 8
Production: 10


Written on 24.10.2014 by Be gentle, I never said I was any good at this!


Comments: 3   Visited by: 209 users
24.10.2014 - 17:46
I learned new words form your review!
26.10.2014 - 06:12
Hmm, I thought it was pretty much a rehash of other post metal bands, and not very interesting at all. Average, I would say. I abandoned it after 4 listenings without being able to attach to it.
26.10.2014 - 17:54
Au Pays Natal
Written by Kuroboshi on 26.10.2014 at 06:12

Hmm, I thought it was pretty much a rehash of other post metal bands, and not very interesting at all. Average, I would say. I abandoned it after 4 listenings without being able to attach to it.

It's not just post metal but a mixed bag of genres. Don't pigeon hole it, keep an open mind while listening, you may change your stance

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