Caravels / Octaves - Split 7-inch (Cover Artwork)
Staff Review

Caravels / Octaves

Split 7-inch (2015)

Topshelf / Bridge 9

Caravels and Octaves are bands would probably be garnering more praise if not for bands like Pianos Become The Teeth and Touche Amore. They've got a sincere yet chaotic disposition that really brings out a lot of emotions. Both bands, when heavy, really sap a lot of energy out of you and it's actually very liberating. If you caught wind of their music over the past three years, it's quite evident why they really deserve more recognition. With a pair of songs each, this split doesn't really stick to the arsenal of old material from either band but it does provide a neat snapshot of what they're capable of. And hints at growth.

Caravels feel more experimental and melodic this time around. Not the heavy screamo, post-hardcore vibe I thought I'd have gotten. "Moody Miles" and "Slick Rick" feel like compositions made if Self Defense Family merged with The Saddest Landscape. Or to be more concise, they feel like Single Mothers with a more breezy, atmospheric guitar set. The beautiful, calming guitars are spot on but the vocal delivery seems to slip by at times. There's some disjoint here and there but nothing too caustic.

The instrumentals are even more encouraging and interesting on "Tom Petty Cash" from Octaves which feels like they want to cut loose more. Sadly, they don't do this fully but it's still teased a lot. The exquisite guitars continue with a more spastic, metal feel over barked vocals on "AM Traffic Control". It's definitely a main point to mention that while these tracks aren't bad, they're still not as brutal as I felt they should have been. You feel like both bands are holding out although bits and pieces come around where they want to let loose the dogs of war. Like I said, it never happens but it's still a fun ride anticipating. Octaves' spin on hardcore is also worth noting because if you've liked Jeremy Bolm's Touche Amore work, then, trust me -- you wanna keep an eye on them. Overall, not a bad effort from either band.