Tir Asleen - Running Strong (Cover Artwork)
Staff Review

Tir Asleen

Running Strong (2010)


Tir Asleen dabble in the sort of experimental post-hardcore best exemplified by overlooked, progressive predecessors and peers like Fear Before and (well, not for long) La Dispute. Moments on their Running Strong EP prove the band's deserving of an audience too, however.

After "This Place Is Not Flat", a spoken-word intro doused in guitar fuzz, "This Place Is Mountains" properly initiates the proceedings. There's melodic singing, but it's delivered in this strangely unsettling way; there's screaming, but it's more in the vein of the aforementioned bands (or a bit like early As Friends Rust, in fact). Some choice lyrics fall a little flat, but the nimble, minor-key feel sets up the EP's darker tone well.

"Damn Dirty Apes" adds heavier, off-kilter hardcore chugging with looped guitar pedals. Those with an affinity for the moshier will get a kick out of this, but the band still guide the track somewhat artfully. The scream in "Castle Greyskull" is more of a hoarse, bear-ish bark, while some of the singing gives things a suddenly more upbeat kick. "Johnny Hammerlungs" and "Vinyl Paradise" close it with the EP's heaviest and most frenetic tracks, respectively.

This is a promising start for Tir Asleen. It gives them a clear niche they're exploring, but they still do it with some unique tones and a definite sort of vibe. While traces of modern metalcore force the band into an area they seem to be more talented and thoughtful than, seeing what's next in store should be interesting.

Running Strong EP