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Posts tagged: Post Rock

Leela and The Rams are a math pop group from Gainesville, FL. They are currently working on their first LP, but for now check out this video! 

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Slint are heading out on tour in the coming months!

April 29—Paradise Rock Club—Boston, MassachusettsApril 30—The Stone Pony—Asbury Park, New JerseyMay 1—Union Transfer—Philadelphia, PennsylvaniaMay 4—Bowery Ballroom—New York, New YorkMay 6—Music Hall Of Williamsburg—Brooklyn, New YorkMay 8—Grog Shop—Cleveland, OhioMay 9—St. Andrews Hall—Detroit, MichiganMay 10—Bottom Lounge—Chicago, IllinoisMay 29-31—Primavera Sound—Barcelona, SpainJune 5-7—Optimus Primavera Sound—Porto, PortugalJuly 18-20—Forecastle Festival—Louisville, Kentucky

Slint are heading out on tour in the coming months!

April 29—Paradise Rock Club—Boston, Massachusetts
April 30—The Stone Pony—Asbury Park, New Jersey
May 1—Union Transfer—Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
May 4—Bowery Ballroom—New York, New York
May 6—Music Hall Of Williamsburg—Brooklyn, New York
May 8—Grog Shop—Cleveland, Ohio
May 9—St. Andrews Hall—Detroit, Michigan
May 10—Bottom Lounge—Chicago, Illinois
May 29-31—Primavera Sound—Barcelona, Spain
June 5-7—Optimus Primavera Sound—Porto, Portugal
July 18-20—Forecastle Festival—Louisville, Kentucky

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Review - Components EP by mOck

It’s been almost two years since we’ve heard new music from Berlin’s crafty trio, mOck, and their latest release, Components, has proven the wait to be well worth our time.

Components is a mark of the great extent to which mOck has grown and matured since their s/t full-length, released in March of 2012. This time around, the band has given us a concise EP rife with patience, precision and delicate organization, sewing a rich musical fabric that showcases interweaving yet unified instrumentation and exemplary songwriting.

The EP begins with, “Poitou,” a song that initially recalls the opening track of 1999’s “Elephant,” by Pelé. The band then references an earlier point in math-rock history, cresting into a blissfully confusing dissonant groove reminiscent of the early 90’s Louisville scene, while still making clear that they’re familiar with Victor Villareal. However, mOck shows us that much has taken place since “Elephant,” “Spiderland,” and “Owls,” were new records. Indeed, Components embodies its title as well as “Poitou’s” refrain, “Concepts collide,” as the band pairs disparate musical species to breed a beast that’s truly unique. Throughout the EP’s four tracks, mOck runs the gamut of nods to seminal math-rock bands, while still drawing from modern jazz and 70s progressive rock (side note: in my mind, “math-rock,” is kind of a less douchey way of saying “post-“, or “neo-progressive rock”).

What this amounts to is a record that consciously exists under the math-rock umbrella, but also transcends and expands that tag in its lack of reliance on the genre’s common technical and tonal figures, while still displaying their ability to replicate them. In other words, mOck, while being impressive but far from showy, let’s the listener know that, sure, they can “do” math-rock, but that that is far from all of which they are capable, and in no way sets a boundary on the music they make.

In a genre where so often we are presented with reiterations of what has come before, mOck stands among a set of superior bands that offer something new, while still recognizing the work of their predecessors. mOck achieves the trying task of sounding familiar without sounding trite, as Components is much more than a recitation of what has come before. What makes mOck’s application of the work of their priors such a success is their ability to take what they’ve heard and expand upon it, developing those ideas to a further end, all in the short span of about 16 minutes. Though replete with the marks of its forbearers, Components recognizes what has come before, while still forging the path ahead. I look forward to seeing where it leads next.

Words by Maggie Toth | Staff Writer

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Live Review - El Ten Eleven - 28/2/2014, Oakland CA

When you click the “About” tab on El Ten Eleven’s website, you’ll see the opening sentence is a quote from guitar and bass virtuoso, Kristian Dunn, which reads, “I really hope people don’t say that we are a math rock band!”
Dunn describes the math rock and prog rock genre being filled with musicians trying to show off for other musicians. Dunn, being half of the two-piece band, may be too quick to judge the genre. He is a skilled musician that plays with a doubleneck bass and guitar combo, and plays both parts simultaneously through tapping and the ability to jump between both necks with ease.
Despite the band dismissing the math rock name, (or any genre besides “power-duo”) they still deliver a flurry of unpredictability and odd time signatures that would make any math rock fan giddy.  
I recently watched the Los Angeles based band perform in The New Parish located in Oakland, Calif. and I must say that they brought an endless barrage of sonic sounds, memorable grooves, and accurate pedal loops, mixed and harmonious with tight drumming from Tim Fogarty.
The most memorable song of the night was “Transitions”— a 10-minute track with a tapped bass intro that gets layered with more tapping on the guitar neck. Interestingly, Dunn implements an Ebow to the mix—commonly seen in post rock bands, which adds a fuzzy bass layer to an already thick and booming bass and guitar loop.
The duo ended the show with their most recognizable song, “My Only Swerving,” which was the highlight. Although they had to start the song over a few times, it didn’t take away the earthy ambiance that song delivers to the audience. The song has an intense blend of different sounds with a tight bass line with whammy sounds, fuzz, and tremolo all mixed in.
There is a difference between El Ten Eleven shows and a dizzying “traditional math rock band.” The duo has people dancing and has the ability to engage the audience. They do not alienate the crowd with flash and complex transitions that leave a standing audience struggling to follow rhythm. Dunn and Fogarty have successfully bridged the gap between catchiness and complexity and blend both worlds nicely. 
Complexity for the sake of being complex isn’t something that they target specifically. But they do have enough complexity to draw the attention of casual listeners and enthusiasts alike.
El Ten Eleven have a few shows left on their tour. You can check out the remaining dates here. Be sure to check them out before their tour ends.
Words & Photographs by Jason Enriquez | Staff Writer | Photographer 
Live Review - El Ten Eleven - 28/2/2014, Oakland CA

When you click the “About” tab on El Ten Eleven’s website, you’ll see the opening sentence is a quote from guitar and bass virtuoso, Kristian Dunn, which reads, “I really hope people don’t say that we are a math rock band!”
Dunn describes the math rock and prog rock genre being filled with musicians trying to show off for other musicians. Dunn, being half of the two-piece band, may be too quick to judge the genre. He is a skilled musician that plays with a doubleneck bass and guitar combo, and plays both parts simultaneously through tapping and the ability to jump between both necks with ease.
Despite the band dismissing the math rock name, (or any genre besides “power-duo”) they still deliver a flurry of unpredictability and odd time signatures that would make any math rock fan giddy.  
I recently watched the Los Angeles based band perform in The New Parish located in Oakland, Calif. and I must say that they brought an endless barrage of sonic sounds, memorable grooves, and accurate pedal loops, mixed and harmonious with tight drumming from Tim Fogarty.
The most memorable song of the night was “Transitions”— a 10-minute track with a tapped bass intro that gets layered with more tapping on the guitar neck. Interestingly, Dunn implements an Ebow to the mix—commonly seen in post rock bands, which adds a fuzzy bass layer to an already thick and booming bass and guitar loop.
The duo ended the show with their most recognizable song, “My Only Swerving,” which was the highlight. Although they had to start the song over a few times, it didn’t take away the earthy ambiance that song delivers to the audience. The song has an intense blend of different sounds with a tight bass line with whammy sounds, fuzz, and tremolo all mixed in.
There is a difference between El Ten Eleven shows and a dizzying “traditional math rock band.” The duo has people dancing and has the ability to engage the audience. They do not alienate the crowd with flash and complex transitions that leave a standing audience struggling to follow rhythm. Dunn and Fogarty have successfully bridged the gap between catchiness and complexity and blend both worlds nicely. 
Complexity for the sake of being complex isn’t something that they target specifically. But they do have enough complexity to draw the attention of casual listeners and enthusiasts alike.
El Ten Eleven have a few shows left on their tour. You can check out the remaining dates here. Be sure to check them out before their tour ends.
Words & Photographs by Jason Enriquez | Staff Writer | Photographer 
Live Review - El Ten Eleven - 28/2/2014, Oakland CA

When you click the “About” tab on El Ten Eleven’s website, you’ll see the opening sentence is a quote from guitar and bass virtuoso, Kristian Dunn, which reads, “I really hope people don’t say that we are a math rock band!”
Dunn describes the math rock and prog rock genre being filled with musicians trying to show off for other musicians. Dunn, being half of the two-piece band, may be too quick to judge the genre. He is a skilled musician that plays with a doubleneck bass and guitar combo, and plays both parts simultaneously through tapping and the ability to jump between both necks with ease.
Despite the band dismissing the math rock name, (or any genre besides “power-duo”) they still deliver a flurry of unpredictability and odd time signatures that would make any math rock fan giddy.  
I recently watched the Los Angeles based band perform in The New Parish located in Oakland, Calif. and I must say that they brought an endless barrage of sonic sounds, memorable grooves, and accurate pedal loops, mixed and harmonious with tight drumming from Tim Fogarty.
The most memorable song of the night was “Transitions”— a 10-minute track with a tapped bass intro that gets layered with more tapping on the guitar neck. Interestingly, Dunn implements an Ebow to the mix—commonly seen in post rock bands, which adds a fuzzy bass layer to an already thick and booming bass and guitar loop.
The duo ended the show with their most recognizable song, “My Only Swerving,” which was the highlight. Although they had to start the song over a few times, it didn’t take away the earthy ambiance that song delivers to the audience. The song has an intense blend of different sounds with a tight bass line with whammy sounds, fuzz, and tremolo all mixed in.
There is a difference between El Ten Eleven shows and a dizzying “traditional math rock band.” The duo has people dancing and has the ability to engage the audience. They do not alienate the crowd with flash and complex transitions that leave a standing audience struggling to follow rhythm. Dunn and Fogarty have successfully bridged the gap between catchiness and complexity and blend both worlds nicely. 
Complexity for the sake of being complex isn’t something that they target specifically. But they do have enough complexity to draw the attention of casual listeners and enthusiasts alike.
El Ten Eleven have a few shows left on their tour. You can check out the remaining dates here. Be sure to check them out before their tour ends.
Words & Photographs by Jason Enriquez | Staff Writer | Photographer

Live Review - El Ten Eleven - 28/2/2014, Oakland CA

When you click the “About” tab on El Ten Eleven’s website, you’ll see the opening sentence is a quote from guitar and bass virtuoso, Kristian Dunn, which reads, “I really hope people don’t say that we are a math rock band!”

Dunn describes the math rock and prog rock genre being filled with musicians trying to show off for other musicians. Dunn, being half of the two-piece band, may be too quick to judge the genre. He is a skilled musician that plays with a doubleneck bass and guitar combo, and plays both parts simultaneously through tapping and the ability to jump between both necks with ease.

Despite the band dismissing the math rock name, (or any genre besides “power-duo”) they still deliver a flurry of unpredictability and odd time signatures that would make any math rock fan giddy.  

I recently watched the Los Angeles based band perform in The New Parish located in Oakland, Calif. and I must say that they brought an endless barrage of sonic sounds, memorable grooves, and accurate pedal loops, mixed and harmonious with tight drumming from Tim Fogarty.

The most memorable song of the night was “Transitions”— a 10-minute track with a tapped bass intro that gets layered with more tapping on the guitar neck. Interestingly, Dunn implements an Ebow to the mix—commonly seen in post rock bands, which adds a fuzzy bass layer to an already thick and booming bass and guitar loop.

The duo ended the show with their most recognizable song, “My Only Swerving,” which was the highlight. Although they had to start the song over a few times, it didn’t take away the earthy ambiance that song delivers to the audience. The song has an intense blend of different sounds with a tight bass line with whammy sounds, fuzz, and tremolo all mixed in.

There is a difference between El Ten Eleven shows and a dizzying “traditional math rock band.” The duo has people dancing and has the ability to engage the audience. They do not alienate the crowd with flash and complex transitions that leave a standing audience struggling to follow rhythm. Dunn and Fogarty have successfully bridged the gap between catchiness and complexity and blend both worlds nicely.

Complexity for the sake of being complex isn’t something that they target specifically. But they do have enough complexity to draw the attention of casual listeners and enthusiasts alike.

El Ten Eleven have a few shows left on their tour. You can check out the remaining dates here. Be sure to check them out before their tour ends.

Words & Photographs by Jason Enriquez | Staff Writer | Photographer

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Review - Hannibal Montana - 28-20 EP

Cannibalistic tween-pop star puns aside (I’m sure they’ve heard it all by now), Hannibal Montana’s third release, an EP following on the tails of two full length efforts, is this New York mathy post-rock trio’s most mature collection to date. 28-20 finds the group taking their genre-bending instrumental style to a new level and stands to distinguish them from their peers. What makes this quite possibly HM’s greatest show of force thus far is that the listener is made acutely aware of these seriously good musicians’ ability to make seriously good music, without being so damn serious about it. If you love post-rock but could drop the melodrama, math rock that does more than Tasmanian-devil-spin its way through pull-off riffs, and if you don’t mind the absence of a vocalist where one isn’t necessarily needed, then your 2014 is off to a good start with 28-20. Because whether it is grinning or snarling, this EP has teeth.

No time is wasted in proving as much as the band launches headlong into their first track, which features a distinctly math rock guitar phrase which is refrained and referenced throughout the song’s progression. What really pulls this song across its substantial landscape is the jazz inflected bass, which in these and other quiet moments of repetition takes the helm and changes course with impressive subtlety and fluidity. The guitar becomes more engaged as the tune takes on a danceable beat which HM have been known to showcase without the usual traces of frivolity – Though this proves to be simply preamble for the entrance of an overdriven roar, which confirms comparisons to early Tera Melos and even hints at an affinity for the metallic. The wailing guitar in this moment acts as a vocalist might, generating a sense of desperation and upping the emotional ante. Its refrain and the following buildup are of precise character, like a robot both breaking down and discovering new uses for its fallen parts.

From this aptly placed first track we are told much about what is in store for the remainder of the nineteen-odd minute long jaunt. It may be, as the band claims, a playful record, but is simultaneously a deceptively aggressive venture. Unlike many bands which these opening phrases call to mind, HM is not satisfied with repetition and patchwork patterning alone, but instead show an ability for extended variation, punctuated by the song’s coda, one which characteristically blends a tight and rhythmically challenging progression - one of my favorite bass melodies on the record - with a droning, atmospheric guitar that does not infringe upon or threaten to dampen its value. This moment is telling, granting us an understanding of the band’s position - They could in fact continue on, allow the tune to stretch out further and explore its variations farther, but there is a victory in disallowing that potential pleasure, as that way lies equal potential for tedium.

The second track introduces us to the ebb-and-flow structure of this album. Each lengthy tune is separated from the next with a shorter track. This is a technique that has proven effective for many bands in and outside of HM’s tangential genres. Albums like Deafheaven’s Sunbather have proven this method to be effective for a larger audience, allowing listeners perhaps less in it for the time signature changes and impressive finger work the chance to breathe, and most importantly to reflect. Its as if “A Lie I Used to Tell”positions us on a high crest, and from that vantage we regard the landscape that has just been rather hastily covered, in case that during our hurried progression through it we had neglected to let it affect us while in its immediate presence. This track however is something more than a bridge from song to song, and is marked by a gentle menace of a melody, disassociated from a desperate rhythm left just outside the door.

But the door does open, and in comes careening the album’s centerpiece, “Tales From The Cryptic.” This song contains some of the most impressive moments and lofty ideas HM puts foreword, but is also made problematic by its rather incidental movement from one idea to the next. Most curious is a quasi-reggae section, situated between one of the band’s most all out driving sections and one of its most ethereal and weightless. Still, the lack of a narrative flow - which is well showcased in some other tunes - does stand to underline the band’s contempt for unneeded complacency, something that is ultimately a virtue. The back half of this track is made up of a large section defined by sonorous, pinging guitars that are as satellites in a swampy belt of space, looping through the thickly starlit blackness. The group does return in force for an energetic refrain of the song’s muscular opening, keeping the murky yet luminous middle section contained within higher walls of meaning.

“X” is the antithesis of the first short track, and begins with a all out hard rock riff, played with a tone that would not be out of place on an early QOTSA record, of all places. But HM wastes no time breaking that riff apart after merely one iteration, slashing at what might have been a song of its own until the shreds become the true form.

Keeping in line with the cyclical nature of the EP, “12 Syllables” opens just as dreamy as you like before the group introduces its most patient and toe-tapping repetition yet. The well-wrought mixture of emotive tonality with a lighthearted execution makes this final track the easiest to latch onto and enjoy. You may - like me - bemoan the brevity of this tack, but as a result may - like me - find yourself hard pressed not to go back and listen all the way through, if only to allow this last to color the rest as it has been colored in turn. In this way, 28-20 compliments itself, and what at first perhaps seemed disconnected turns enticing, as the parts prove themselves vital the whole.

The portions of this EP that really shine are those in which HM finds itself with all six feet planted firmly on the ground. Their astral ventures are pleasant, but are as leaps taken on a distant sphere – they may feel like flying, but are always accompanied by the anticipation of touchdown - that moment of attaining a grasp of real purpose as to the meaning of the voyage, and with the most capable Hannibal Montana yet in the driver’s seat, this is surely one worth taking.

________________

Words by Nick Otte | Staff Writer

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Review - They Will Come Back For You… by Kusanagi

"Album opener ‘Spires’ forelays the progressively mathy twang that comes to define this album as it negotiates a palatable mix of time signatures before it settles into an instrumental rasp. Just when you’re comfortable, it breaks suddenly into a cleaner, distinctly math-rock, frenzy that sounds like an uninhibited Antitode - era Foals. Lucid periods of droney guitar - punctuated neatly by a fixed ¾ motif - are backed by purposeful drum and bass stabs that work their way toward a heavy ending section that mirrors the beginning in a satisfyingly cyclic manner.

The precisely manufactured delay at the start of track 2 ‘What fools these mortals’, provides a brief rest before the clout reforms into thick bass and a cymbal-wash that ushers the unrelenting guitar riff to ascend with a hypnotic persistence. To finish, a distorted atonal mess bleeds into the time-twisting venture that is ‘Rhinoceros’. This album begins to take on a direction that is both refreshing musically, and indicative of the Liverpool 4 piece’s enviable grasp of genre-traversing dynamics.

As with all of the tracks on this album, this song always seems to be heading somewhere big, however equally characteristic is the way that the build-up is tauntingly prolonged until a section of unexpected calm ensues. Light cymbals path the route for incredibly strong chord progressions that are joined swiftly by an overarching melodic warmth; a tonal quality that I personally believe is this album at its best. A brief section of pinpoint tapping marks the desire line back to an almost- mathcore ending. This amalgamation of different sections is thematic of the entire album which generally feels like a collection of loosely connected ideas that somehow work as a whole, forming an infectious structural dystopia that forever leaves you guessing. This kind of unpredictability is reminiscent of Wot Gorilla?, who – with their own unique way of matching the ethereal with the raucous - are not so dissimilar in their overall feel.

By far the best track for me takes form in the tropical-pop-esque ‘Danxia’ that begins with a rolling drum intro joined by a precise, punchy guitar riff. When this theme becomes accentuated by a bass that meanders between octaves with purpose, the jazz influenced track takes on a new breathe of lung-friendly air, (think of a relaxed Suffer Like G Did without quite as much time-signature play). The interaction of the two guitars are tantamount in both virtuosity and impact as they amble slowly towards a distinctly post-rock ending section that builds with climactic intent, warranting the total time of 7+ minutes.

The penultimate track ‘One day they will come back for you’ cites a familiar chord progression packaged with driving and expansive drums and dense, sweetly reverb-laden guitars who’s composite is a frenetic energy that somehow maintains control. An always-welcome bass solo-part shifts to a spacey section of interwoven drum and bass thuds and phrases that are incredibly well written and enforced.

The album releases the accumulated tension in 2 minute closer ‘They will come back to you…’, as the unexpected dimension of a half-glitchy drum track provides the backdrop for some ambient synths to post-rock their way to the end of a thoroughly satisfying album. The ellipsis in the track title is a fitting way to underpin the sense of anticipation that amounts, as ever-differing, ever-unforeseeable sections are worked around with a unifying proficiency.”

Kusanagi Facebook | Bandcamp

Words by Jonny

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ARCTANGENT RETURNS IN 2014!
A handpicked line up from the 2013 bill was announced today for the Thursday “VIP Early Entry” night of ArcTanGent.
The special returning guests night is to be headlined by And So I Watch You From Afar with support from Three Trapped Tigers, TTNG, The Physics House Band, Baby Godzilla, Nordic Giants, The St. Pierre Snake Invasion and Theo.
Organiser James Scarlett says “we wanted to bring back some of the bands that helped make last year’s ArcTanGent such a success. The VIP Early Entry is an optional night, so it’s really targeted at the super-fans. Bringing back some special guests will excite those who came to the festival last year, and will give those who missed it a chance to catch a little bit of the 2013 vibe.”
This is the first of what will be several ArcTanGent updates and announcements in the coming months leading up to the festival that takes place on the 28th to the 30th of August 2014.
Organiser Simon Maltas says “we’ve already sold more than 3 times the amount of tickets compared to this time last year without announcing a single band. It seems that people are mad keen to be a part of ArcTanGent next year and they just know we’re planning on bringing them some awesome bands. We’re confident that we’ll totally sell out way before the event, especially when folks see the bands we’ve booked. Trust us, August 2014 is going to be seriously amazing for fans of math-rock and post-rock!”
With bands yet to be announced from the UK, USA and Japan… don’t delay! head on over to the links below and bag yourself a ticket. It’s the place to be at in math rock this year.
Want to get a feel of what last years festival was like? Check out our ArcTanGent Festival Diaries!
Tickets | Website | Facebook | Twitter

ARCTANGENT RETURNS IN 2014!

A handpicked line up from the 2013 bill was announced today for the Thursday “VIP Early Entry” night of ArcTanGent.

The special returning guests night is to be headlined by And So I Watch You From Afar with support from Three Trapped Tigers, TTNG, The Physics House Band, Baby Godzilla, Nordic Giants, The St. Pierre Snake Invasion and Theo.

Organiser James Scarlett says “we wanted to bring back some of the bands that helped make last year’s ArcTanGent such a success. The VIP Early Entry is an optional night, so it’s really targeted at the super-fans. Bringing back some special guests will excite those who came to the festival last year, and will give those who missed it a chance to catch a little bit of the 2013 vibe.”

This is the first of what will be several ArcTanGent updates and announcements in the coming months leading up to the festival that takes place on the 28th to the 30th of August 2014.

Organiser Simon Maltas says “we’ve already sold more than 3 times the amount of tickets compared to this time last year without announcing a single band. It seems that people are mad keen to be a part of ArcTanGent next year and they just know we’re planning on bringing them some awesome bands. We’re confident that we’ll totally sell out way before the event, especially when folks see the bands we’ve booked. Trust us, August 2014 is going to be seriously amazing for fans of math-rock and post-rock!”

With bands yet to be announced from the UK, USA and Japan… don’t delay! head on over to the links below and bag yourself a ticket. It’s the place to be at in math rock this year.

Want to get a feel of what last years festival was like? Check out our ArcTanGent Festival Diaries!

Tickets | Website | Facebook | Twitter

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DASBOOT is the latest EP from 2-piece Manc soul-math-jazz-rockers Pedro Don Key. 

"It’s incredibly easy to blindly scream names of potential influences as soon as you press play on an EP from a band you’ve not heard before, so let’s refrain from the ‘this lot sound like You Slut!!!!’ kind of business and just pinpoint what makes this EP lovely, yeah?

The opening track, ‘KingDaveFrost’ sets a delightfully hectic tone. Downtuned guitars, catchy little guitar sections, and crazy time signatures (would you believe?) feature heavily, achieving a powerful effect. The playful and scary dissonance carries through to the rest of the EP. My favourite track is ‘HiFiDad’, where there are sections that sound sparse, but in a way that reminds you that you’re only listening to two people perform. And this is interspersed with some memorable and uniquely phrased guitar, drums that are even crazy by the standards of math, and just general pengness. Three really nice tracks. And if you need a little more convincing to download this EP, then remember that its price is just a donation- which can be nothing, if you prefer. (Think In Rainbows, it’s essentially free, but hey, you can alternatively download it for real life money and then boast to your friends about how you paid for it.)
You should definitely download it either way.”
- Words by Andrew King

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