The Age of The Universe - Singularity (Cover Artwork)

The Age of The Universe

Singularity (2014)


Local D.C act The Age of The Universe brings back the days of classic "Thrasher," mullets and empty pools yet with a new found touch of spirituality found in many Krishna conscious bands, but lacking the Krishna ideal of it, however. Does this sound confusing? It slightly is. The Age of The Universe puts forth a solid effort with elements of spirituality most bands of their genre leave untouched. Their debut full length Singularity jumps between many genres all the way maintaining an active heaviness. Released on May 15, 2014 this record takes the listener on a deep spiritual journey in the minds of the ancients.

The opening track "Alive" begins with an Artist in the Ambulance, Thrice—esque intro, open guitars blast through the listeners ears, slicing back and forth across space and time. This quickly is condensed as a break beat drum line is sprinkled by delayed tremolo picked guitars. The vocals here are reminiscent of The Mars Volta, high pitched and daring. Cutting through everything with a piercing sonic force. Crashing cymbals and a single, crushing guitar bring us into the chorus, where even higher harmonies pierce the listeners ear. "And I feel like its the first day of my life/I'm Alive" flows on top of this cacophony of sounds. Generic and bland lyrically, but it works for what it is. Soon a barrage of heavy metal head—banging riffs are thrown the listener's way. A very complex song, with perhaps too much going on.

"Men on the Edge" brings the record to a new directions. Beginning with tribal humming and twangy repetitive guitar picking. It quickly explodes into a '80s thrashcore song. Reminiscent of later era Cro—Mags or Municipal Waste even. The high—pitched vocals here work wonders. The next track, "Far From the Sun," brings the levels down, as watery acoustic guitars float through the listener's ear, below a deep bass and drum combo float along the waves. Things slowly increases to an emotional crest as the band erupts against the wind, soaring vocals trail over repetitive chants and guitars increase emotion in lieu of the drums.

The title track "Singularity" drips through the listener's ears with clean, post—rock guitars falling all around. A smooth back beat falls through as the song flows along. RHCP is brought to mind. The tables soon turn however and as the heaviness of the band returns, same notes but played in full with heavier distortion, showcasing a difficulty in sticking to one mood. A transition back into the smoothness of the group emits relaxed energies once more. The more than seven minute epic is transformed in the middle as wet delayed guitars ring out. Gigantic drums pound their way sparingly, created a large atmosphere. Something Caspian or Russian Circle would create. This continues for a short while until a driving Chiodos—like section ends out the song.

"Spanish Eyes" gives an interesting flamenco twists to the album, later bringing to mind the more jazz like tendencies of Between The Buried and Me and The Mars Volta. A bass solo fills the middle of the song. "Say It Loud" returns to the '80s thrashcore vibes and the album closer "Dreams of Tomorrow" makes good use of the bands ability to transition from smooth to heavy in an instant.

A lot happens in this album. Making it slightly difficult to listen too. While progressive metal and rock can easily be done it can not easily be done well. It takes more than combining different styles and sections. They need to be combined well. And if your band sounds like The Cro—Mags at one point and not the rest of it, perhaps it shouldn't sound like The Cro—Mags at all.