Ice Hockey - Wavefunction Collapse (Cover Artwork)
Staff Review

Ice Hockey

Wavefunction Collapse (2015)

Texas Is Funny

Get in on the post-hardcore, screamo scene before the bands decide to channel their music more melodically, and more "intuitively."

One of my friends jested as we sat listening to Ice Hockey and Pianos Become The Teeth came up. We deliberated about bands wanting to do things differently as they got older. We argued. And argued. But one common point we had was that Wavefunction Collapse is a record that definitely demands more time in the spotlight. It's one of the more intense albums out the 2015 gates thus far.

Emotional. Vulnerable. Stirring. Hard not to get these feels inherent with late '90s/early 2000s hardcore screamo/punk bands. Ice Hockey leans to the former and leans quite well. There's a lot on offer -- hardcore, progressive rock (as per the silky smooth yet abrasive when need be guitars) and even thrash punk. "Rock Island" and "The Great Flood of '93" illustrate this perfectly and let me warn you, the pit'll explode when these hit. Interesting musical structures drape the album and they're inconsistent and non-linear which I honestly think gives Ice Hockey a nice edge. They feel like modern PBTT mixed with the older, gruffer stuff from The Saddest Landscape.

Of course, there are doses of metal thrown and sections come off a la Circle Takes The Square and Dillinger Escape Plan but what's notable is that when these songs become a bit repetitive, Ice Hockey flick the switch to a more approachable style of skramz. In fact, it's similar to stuff that Leer, Goodtime Boys and Everybody Row put out. "East Lansing" is one of these tracks and one gripe I admit I have is that these tracks are shunted toward the end of the record. I think they could have balanced the distribution a bit more as these particular songs feel more distinguishable and ownable. All in all, the short bursts of energy are worth it though. "Solar Myths and Autumn" wrap things up with eclectic guitar-work and feels like the breather we need after such a rush. One or two tracks too long, but definitely Ice Hockey nets. Recommended.