I like a bit of post-rock every now and then. Lately I’ve been revisiting my copies of A Silver Mount Zion albums, listening to a bit of Mono, Mogwai as ever and delving into Explosions in the Sky more and more. So when I got an email that compared Vessels to Mogwai, Explosions In The Sky, Mono, and, to a lesser extent, Broken Social Scene my interest piqued. First the facts.
Vessels are a band from Leeds, England. They have a self-titled EP out from 2006. Their MySpace page has an amusing video of a bald “dancing dude” playing air guitar/throwing shapes to their live gig. They have a proper debut coming in February on Cuckundoo Records. Now the music.
Vessels are musical schizophrenics. Or maybe they just have very short-attention spans. At their core, they are very much a post-rock band but they display frantic style changes throughout their EP that at times it’s akin to a child experimenting with finger paints.
“OOOH! WHAT HAPPENS IF I MIX THESE FOUR COLOURS TOGETHER?”
EP opener “The Beast” is Battles flirting with the Rednecks which segues into track two “Take it Outside” – a fucking RAWK song in the style of American post-hardcore. Post-rock with vocals! And a guitar solo! Bless!
On “Armed to the teeth” the finger-painting child reflects on his polychromatic work of art (Read: They go a bit shoegaze on our asses). “Happy Accident” is Mogwai’s gentle riffage meeting 65daysofstatic’s subtle electronics complete with underlying speech samples! They’re lucky it’s good.
At this stage, the finger-painting child is tired and realising it’s a lovely summer day, goes out to lie in the garden to bask in the day’s last moments of sunshine. Facing the sky, the child stares at the cirrus and cummulus clouds passing overhead, picking out characters and recognisable shapes in the skyline as the EP finishes in a thumping 8 minute epic.
“LOOK AT THAT CLOUD!”
It’s an interesting collection of songs, no doubt. All the twists and turns coagulate into some exciting and ambitious music and while they never quite scale the heights of the aforemented artists, there are enough snatches of blissful instrumentation to ensure repeated plays.