17 June 2011

All Will Be Quiet

My thanks to Tatu Halonen for reaching out to me and sharing his band’s amazing music.

Hailing from Helsinki, Finland, All Will Be Quiet is producing its own take of post-rock. What really caught my ear right away is the apparent attention paid to receptivity by a listener; this is not rare in post-rock, but this young band has the songwriting chops of some veterans. This is a big statement, I know, but take a serious listen to what is on offer. Of course naysayers are going to question the quality of sound and other such production glitz that come with being part of a major label; All Will Be Quiet is an independent band, without corporate sponsorship, producing their own music, yet they have artistry, sophistication, and quality that is admirable. Especially if you are a fan of post-rock, take a serious listen.

“All Will Be Quiet EP” (7 April 2010)

With the aptly named title “Intro,” the EP gets off to a slow, dreary start, of layered and effected arrangements, but this is apparently to juxtapose the second track, “I See.” Lost somewhere between post-rock (drums, bass) and ambient electronic, this song earns its epic stature; at nearly seven-and-one-half minutes, the masterful repetition and minimalist, layered arrangements create beautiful atmosphere. And when the beat completely drops, nearly three minutes into the song, the post-punkish guitars really dominate the soundscape, and even when the song completely slows down towards the later third of the song, it is obvious that the band’s intention is to play with the audience’s sonic and visceral reception of the song.

This notion of playing with reception is continued right throughout the EP; reality is that the most effectively post-rock (think Mogwai) relies heavily on this sort of conscious relationship between the music and reception more so than does indie and pop, which typically only has one “feel” throughout a song. “Let Her Live” continues with this play on reception beautifully. “Tomorrow” does not shift its soundscape till the end of the track; however, what is on offer here are strong lyrics to conjure up experiences in the listener: “In time everything will change and fade away. Memories will turn to gray and fade.”

“Washed Away” is hands down my favorite track on this collection. From the musical arrangements to the lyrics, this is an ode to post-punk à la post-rock. From a subtle contemplative repetitive arrangement to a minimalist sinister interlude to a pre-industrial post-punk sound, the song is viscerally stunning. Closing with the titular and eponymous track, “All Will Be Quiet” forces us lyrically to think about the games we all have (or will) play at some point in life: “Hey, can you say, “I’ve done wrong”? This game. You got what you asked for. Hope for the better… All will be quiet.” Musically, the most consistent soundscape in terms of the underpinnings of the song, but it doesn’t make the song “odd man out”; it is all about reception. It is the kind of theme that deserves that sort of consistency in order to drive home the point, and this shift in style is further evidence of careful craftsmanship.

Track Listing:
1. Intro
2. I See
3. Let Her Live
4. Tomorrow
5. Washed Away
6. All Will Be Quiet

“The First Day EP” (3 May 2011)

All Will Be Quiet’s latest offer is a two-track (mini) EP, “The First Day.” Though only two tracks long, it is obvious that the craftsmanship has matured over the last year. The first track, “Writing History,” is subtle, post-punk minimalism, with ambient arrangements and beautiful vocal arrangements in the chorus: “We’ll make it to the books, and we’ll make their fate.” Followed by “A Promise,” this track follows more of the mold of the debut EP: arrangements are played with for receptivity. From passively ambient to abrasively luscious (oxymoron, I know!), unlike the opening track that revolves around the lyrics, this song is about the music, which continuously builds throughout the song.

Track Listing:
1. Writing History
2. A Promise

Keep up with All Will Be Quiet at their MySpace and Facebook. Head over to their Bandcamp site where you can preview and download their music.

Here is the track “A Promise,” shared from their Bandcamp site.

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