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Album Reviews

Explosions in the Sky - Wilderness

Adam Sputh

  Almost explicitly producing purely instrumental music, Explosions in the Sky is a rock band hailing from Austin, Texas. Known for their emotional and large scale shows, the band creates music that tugs at the listener's emotions. The Wilderness is their new work after their 2011 release, Take Care, Take Care, Take Care, and it's an emotional piece that undulates throughout each track and incites imagery and certain feelings to the listener.

  The opening track, “Wilderness” creates a sense of an adventure, beginning with soft electronic beats, and pulses of sound. This setting is present throughout the album, particularly in tracks such as “Ecstatics”, and “Landing Cliffs”. The band utilizes different dynamics in their songs; crescendos bring forth rising action and movement, while the use of subito forte in songs such as “Tangle Formations” surprises the listener. Despite the fact that each song on The Wilderness is segmented and separated with no transitions, there is a clear progression of the album musically; the album starts off with calm electronic beats with a melodic guitar part, but the track then morphs more into slow tracks with orchestral strings such as cello, and viola. “Disintegration Anxiety” breaks this pattern however, with a chopped electronic intro that then crescendos into a more fast paced drum beat with varying musical dynamics that comes in waves. The album closes with “Landing Cliffs” which is one of the most progressive tracks; this track evolves from quiet chiming bells into symphony of different sounds ranging from guitar to synth, and serves as a peaceful reflection of the album.

  Explosion in the Sky’s album The Wilderness, acts as a strong return album since their last release 5 years ago. The sounds, and tones of each instrument in the band melds together into one unique sound that recognizable to their “old sound”, yet still progressing into new musical ideas.

By Alexander Parks