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Explosions In The Sky - Take Care, Take Care, Take Care

Tapehead   (41 reviews)

Posted: 03/30/2011 | Comments: 9 | Rate:

The handful of times I listened to All Of A Sudden I Miss Everyone, the 2007 release from post-rock instrumentalists Explosions In The Sky, it was difficult to maintain start-to-finish interest. Explosions In The Sky tends to make albums meant to inhabit as opposed to listen, their melodies and harmonies surrounding you like sonic down, providing ample aural comfort. It sounds nice, but it gets monotonous. All elements are sort of draped in an angelic glow, so much so that the soft reverb and overwhelming distance drown out what the band actually pulls together. Even on those “rock” moments when the mix grows severe, it’s all too pretty to drive your fist into the air, and your Zippo tribute just chokes and gasps in the sound’s envelopment, struggling to find viable air.

I was expecting a return to this for the band’s newest album, Take Care, Take Care, Take Care, but when the snare sound kicked in for the album’s first piece, “Last Known Surroundings,” less obscured by embellishment—clean—I kept listening. (Just a note: That snare sound had me online to see if Steve Albini had worked on this album. If you’ve heard Nirvana’s In Utero, Pixies’ Surfer Rosa or PJ Harvey’s Rid Of Me, you’ll recognize the similarity. Albini did not produce this album, though. Gratuitous observation.) With that little omission of polish, it’s easier to understand Explosions In The Sky in terms of song craft. Their chords still drift into space; keys fade into the ether. But, I feel anchored listening to this and not so liable to float away myself.

Better still, Take Care, Take Care, Take Care grows more interesting as the album plays. Though “Last Known Surroundings” and the grand pulsating gesture of “Human Qualities” carry on familiarly, “Trembling Hands” goes sort of dance punk, snare couplets and rolls accompanied by plucked chords and choral sections. Even better is “Be Comfortable, Creature,” which shuffles percussively while dueling, cherubic guitar swashes float through the air. It’s the most spare I’ve heard this band, and it actually demonstrates the positives of reduction, or editing. The song does eventually revert back to sonic walls of ethereal shock, but those moments don’t detract from the overall song.

“Postcard In 1952” also keeps to a level of minimalism before reveling in the soft and sonic debris. “Let Me Back In” closes the album out in a nice array of string play before the band glides into volume and then settles ultimately on drum taps and intermingling whales with light loops of sampled speech hanging out underneath.

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Yeah ok drink blea
3,092 Posts
I was thinking about picking this up. Would you compare it to any of their other work?
nah im alright
3,871 Posts
love this band/record.

mogwai or god speed you black emperor would be more appropriate than pelican
vanilla gorilla
213,647 Posts
incredible album.
11,730 Posts
Can't wait to get this.
The shy retirer
14,553 Posts
Gave it two listens so far. It's good but it hasn't really grabbed me like some of their prior releases have.
im gay
45,257 Posts
Awesome fucking album
62,973 Posts
I'll take a wild guess and assume this sounds nearly identical to their first five albums? I'll always hold a special place for The Earth is not a Cold Dead Place, but i'm pretty over this band at this point.
Means to an end
13,569 Posts
It's not as identical to their previous work as you might expect.

I expected it to be the same but it isn't The Earth is not a Cold Dead Place part 2.
I got nothing.
5,878 Posts
It's really not all that identical but its also not all that great either.

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