Friday, November 2, 2007

Reviews:: Arrows Knives Are Falling From the Sky

I actually meant to include this in the odds & sods today, so sorry about tossing up another quick hitter. Arrows are a boy/girl two-piece from Guelph, Ontario. Now, I know right away you will ask two questions:
1) Are they a couple? Yes
2) Do they write poppy, synth driven hooks? No

Ryan and Jackie aren't Mates of State, Matt and Kim or anything close. Instead of drawing from pop influences, the duo prefers to reside in the same neighborhood as Fugazi and the Pixies (but, in that analogy if Ian, Frank, or Kim Deal had nice houses, the Arrows would be the people renting a one bedroom studio living off Mr. Noodles). Comparing the band to the greats isn't fair (to either side), so I'm certainly not trying to say they are the next Pavement. It's their first record and the The Arrows are trying to define their sound, but they are having a lot of fun doing it.

The record - Knives are Falling From the Sky - is a collection of sludgy, heavy guitars, well placed breakdowns and big drums. It's a DIY project (with help from the Ford Plant Recording Company), which again seems fitting considering the sounds they like to play, but without question there is something there. It's the type of sounds we heard a lot of in the 90's, but unless you look at all the reunion tours going on these days, the heavy noise filled tracks are not very common. Here in Time could have made an appearance on countless mix tapes from the 90's (or maybe a Hey Mercedes record), but the tracks don't sound dated or forced.

In fact, it's the subtle addictive noodles they add that helps the band so much. They mix just enough shimmer with the heavy riffs to make the sounds stick out. Coat of Arms starts with Ryan's vocals and slow plodding guitars drenched in feedback, but over the course of the 3 minutes, the pace picks up and Jackie takes the lead and pumps out "oohs" over top a skittish punk riff. Without that little bounce of life, the song would simply move along at a glacial pace, but instead it crackles. Definitely a band to keep an ear on.

MP3:: Coat of Arms
MP3:: Knives are Falling From the Sky

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Posted at 6:00 PM by ack :: 0 comments

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