Album Review: Autumn Owls - Between Buildings, Toward the Sea - Already Heard
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Album Review: Autumn Owls - Between Buildings, Toward the Sea

I gave Autumn Owls‘Between Buildings, Toward The Sea’ a few times before I sat down to read over the accompanying press release and was surprised to read that this sweeping, intricate record was put together by a three piece. This first full-length release by the Dubliners is brilliantly produced and proves rather addictive. I’ll admit that the first listen didn’t blow me away. The songs are slow, deep, and sorrowful and yet following my second listen and the many that came after, ‘Between Buildings…’ reveals itself as something special. Emotionally, if not musically, this album is reminiscent of early Portishead; music with undeniably melancholy overtones that gives the heartstrings a welcome tug.

Opening track ‘Semaphores’ is a difficult one. It’s a great track but clocking in just shy of five minutes it goes on perhaps a little too long to open such an album – attention is grabbed and then let slip. It’s fortunate then that Autumn Owls pull the whole thing back from the brink with the wonderful riff that runs throughout second track ‘Unconvinced’ and this is where the band states their intent. ‘Unconvinced’ is followed by stand out track ‘Spider’ – a haunting piece, carried along by intelligent drumming and more enigmatic guitar work.

‘Between Buildings, Toward The Sea’ continues along the same vain for almost a half hour more and never grows dull, never releases the attention it took back following its early shake. ‘All the Lights In New York’ proves that Autumn Owlscan keep the listener’s interest over a prolonged period – at 5:56 this is the best song on the album. Singer Gary McFarlane’s vocals are at their best here, showcasing his ability to move through and around the styles already proven earlier. Moving into a powerful, moving breakdown, ‘All The Lights In New York’ shows a band at their best – original, passionate, and intelligent

Fortunately, closing track ‘Borrowed Suit’ maintains the standard and closes out the album in style. There’s plenty of distortion, twang, and sweeping vocals to convince you that the right thing would be to hit play just one more time. This is certainly not a party record but it’s a record that will see you through times between in beautiful fashion. ‘Between Buildings, Toward the Sea’ is interesting, intricate, and well worth your time.

 4/5

'Between Buildings, Toward The Sea' by Autumn Owls is out now on Epitonic Records.

Autumn Owls links: Website|Facebook|Twitter|Bandcamp|Soundcloud

Words by Tom Knott.

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