The best albums are often the albums that come out of nowhere.
Everyone that invests a lot of time into listening to music knows the joy of hearing a band for the very first time and having them just completely blow you away. Angel Eyes did that for me on their epic 2005 effort Something to Do with Death. It was powerful, gorgeous, and ferocious all at once, with subtleties just as profound as the cataclysmic sound they created at their peak.
For those not fortunate enough to be surprised and blown away when that record came out, the band has a new EP, ...And for a Roof a Sky Full of Stars. that has the power to accompish just the same.
It's the tension that Angel Eyes create even with minimal means that resonates the loudest. They're able to perfectly toe the thinnest of proverbial high-wires between subtle ambience and ferocious explosions. The eerie calm of the band in their reserved moments is never a feeling of safety; there's always a catostrophic turn not far down the road. And even in those moments, even in the moments where Angel Eyes' singer is shredding his vocal chords in two, there's is a sense of calm. The demure and the destructive are binded by a rhythm that never lets go.
The minimal means mentioned earlier are clearly expressed on the first of the EP's two tracks; after being ushered in by some foreboding feedback, the slow, melodic rhythm is guided along by the rising and falling drum fills, the combination of which is brooding and dramatic, as if something startling is coming along at any second. And something does -- the searing vocals of the Angel Eyes frontman tumultuouosly enter the fray. The dynamics are heightened to a frenzied pitch and before you know it, that brooding rhythm has returned. Dark and powerful, it keeps you on your toes as the crescendo increases in volume until the breaking point is reached, and it all subsides. It sounds like a simple formula, one that post-rock bands and Isis clones alike have been using for a while now, but Angel Eyes set themslves apart with how masterfully they craft every part of a song. The dark overtones during the first tracks buildup are chill-inducing, it's the mastery of setting a mood.
Angel Eyes have set the pieces perfectly in place: from the incredibly intense vocals that perfectly accent the rhythms that set them, to the brooding tones that give off such vivid imagery you'd think the band was telling you word-for-word what to see.
And I do see, I see it clear as day, I see the band and I see the world at their feet.