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…And Stars Collide EP

...And Stars Collide EP

...And Stars Collide EP

Being a fan of instrumental post rock can be quite a challenge at times. As much as I adore the work of Mogwai, they have inspired and spawned an alarming amount of bands (or downright plagiarists). The challenge lies within trying to sort the wheat from the chaff from aforementioned bands.
Listening to countless boring and uninspiring copyists, however, all seems worth it when you come across a band who not only take the stark, brutal beauty of Mogwai, 65daysofstatic, EITS etc at their angriest, but toy with it and mold it to fit their own ideal and create something else entirely. It is with great pleasure I announce that …And Stars Collide will, that’s undeniable, will go on to great things.
Bearing in mind this is a debut EP, it sounds remarkably accomplished, almost like they’ve been playing together for years and understand each others nuances down to a tee. Opening track ‘Every Step Takes Me Further From Home (Part II)’, opens with a riff reminiscent of early 65daysofstatic before exploding into a wall of melodic guitar work. This later gives way to a cacophonous rage which heads straight for the jugular.
…And Stars Collide are also more than capable of quieter melancholy moments also, as proven with 2nd track ‘See The Opening Morn’, which maintains a heartbreaking tone throughout it’s reverb and cello laden intro through to it’s crescendo, which leaves the hair on the back of your neck on end.
3rd track, ‘Your Winter Night Spent In Disguise’ is the weakest of the EP. What is meant to be an angry, brooding piece of music much like Mogwai’s ‘Like Herod’ falls just a bit flat in it’s steady build up and then back to the meandering noodling.
The 4th and final track ‘We Are None Of Us Long Of This World’ however, is a remarkable piece of work. Agonizingly beautiful melodies begin the 10 minute opus, with a gentle drum pattern being slowly filtered in underneath it. Neat and tidy bass playing is soon brought into the mix and this combination steadily builds up over 5 minutes (which doesn’t seem like any time at all when you listen to it) until the beautiful wail of the guitar kicks in and the listener is left awe-struck at just how much of an epiphany it sounds.
Overall, this is an incredible debut for the Nottingham based band, griped only by the meandering 3rd track and just how low down in the mix some of the heavier parts are. I’m genuinely interested in seeing how well they transfer the more successful parts of the EP live, and also what they can cook up with a full length album.

8.5/10

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23/04/2009 Posted by | Music, Reviews | Leave a comment

Valve release FREE Left 4 Dead DLC

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Left 4 Dead creators, Valve, have released free downloadable content for our favourite game of last year. The DLC will include multiplayer versions of the two campaigns which were previously only playable solo. However, the inclusion of an entirely new mode of play, Survival mode, is the part of the DLC that has provided the most interest.

In Survival mode, you and up to 3 others will try and fend off a never ending horde of undead for as long as possible. We can only assume this has been made as a catch up to the Nazi Zombie mode in Call Of Duty: World At War and Survival mode in Resident Evi 5.

Having only had a brief couple of plays on the DLC, we can’t wait until we can fully immerse ourselves in the frantic zombie apocalypse simulator.

The free DLC is available for Xbox 360 & PC version of the game

Left 4 Dead was released to critical acclaim late last year. Gamers and critics alike instantly hailed the games heavy reliance on team work and co-operation to create one of the most fun and interesting multiplayer experiences we’ve seen in a long time.

23/04/2009 Posted by | Gaming, News | Leave a comment