Wednesday, April 18, 2018

Music Review: Scraps of Tape "The Will To Burn" (Denovali Records)

As someone who has been listening to rock music for as long as I can remember, it's refreshing to hear a band like Scraps of Tape.   There are several factors within this album that are to be considered and the first one is really about how looks can be deceiving.   "Album? But this isn't as many songs as there usually are on an album.  Don't you mean EP?"  If you make a single track over an hour in length, I'll consider it an album.   As such, I consider "The Will To Burn" a full length album not because of the number of songs and maybe not even because of their total length but because of their weight.   These songs just feel like albums in themselves, the type of which music historians will try to break down and analyze individually in years to come.

It's kind of funny I thought of they as being weighty (Is that a real word? Who knows) because in the song "Negative Architect" there is the line "Everything breaks under enough weight".    And here is where things get mixed up again.  One of the next aspects of this album you should enjoy are the lyrics.   The title, for example, does come up during a song.   But even to say you could quote these lyrics and such. Scraps of Tape somehow manages to create an album which is heavy on the music.   Yes, this music is heavy in the way that it sounds but there is also more music than singing.    Seven minutes into a song that's over ten minutes is when you'll first hear singing.  It just kind of has that effect where you feel like you're hearing more music than lyrics even if sometimes you aren't.

The music itself is really why you should listen to "The Will To Burn Though".   I'd use the tired cliche of "Not a lot of bands make music that sound like this" but the fact is that bands try to make music which sounds like this-- bands just can't seem to make music which sounds this good.   Perhaps the biggest influence I hear right away in these songs is Chevelle and, God, I love Chevelle.   Sometimes in the music alone (And not the vocals) I hear Audioslave, which is weird.  I think of this as sounding like some of the heavier rock I listened to in the early '00's as well.  The bands who were on the cusp of hardcore but not truly hardcore.   The Beautiful Mistake perhaps the biggest comparison among them (with a small nod to Lorene Drive)

So odd how this album is heavy but not in a double bass drum way.   It's full of insightful lyrics and yet tends to favor the music over the words.  The length is also more than it appears in both real time and the number of songs, but despite the weight of it all this album does fly by when you listen to it.   I still remember the first time I put it on, I knew the length and kind of looked up like, "What? How is this over already? That can't be right", but I suppose it could just be a matter of music going by faster when you are enjoying it, much like anything in life. 

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