Engine Down - Under the Pretense of Present Tense
This is the first album from VA's Engine Down, and after all the hype, it
doesn't let down. The first time I heard about this band was in reference
to the guitar player's old band, Sleepytime Trio. He played drums in that
band but picked up the guitar and vocal work in this one. Naturally, I was
interested as ST are one of my all time favorite bands. Last summer their
debut 7" was released just prior to their U.S. tour supporting another
Lovitt Records band, 400 Years. Suffice to say, Engine Down blew them off
the stage. Since that night I have ben eagerly awaiting the full length,
wearing the grooves on that first 7" through. What a pleasent surprise it
was to find the cd in my mailbox this week....
This cd demonstrates all that is fresh in the current "emo" scene. Forget
all those Get Up Kids/Promise Ring/Mineral rip off bands, this is where
it's at. Engine Down play incredibly driving, coarse emotional hardcore
coupled with long drawn instrumental segments accented with chimes,
violins, cellos, and piano work. Most of the songs go over the five
minute mark with the band shifting seamlessly in and out of each style.
There is so much raw passion and energy seeping from each one of these
songs as the singers agonize; it's hard not to get caught up in it
yourself. This band is honest. With the way things are going in the
underground "scene" right now, this is about the highest compliment i can
give a band.
After they played last summer I remember watching the guitar player slump
down on the stage after the last song and start crying. Maybe you think
thats a sign of insincerity and that he's just posturing. Take one listen
to this entire cd and try to tell me that.
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