Sound — 10
Rising from Auckland New Zealand Battle Circus released their eponymous debut album in June 2011, sadly disbanding at the end of the same month. Battle Circus's sound is a unique blend of progressive rock, jazz and cabaret/circus style music. The sum of this creates a melancholic sound supported by multiple symphonic elements.
Lyrics — 10
Unlike their previous EP, lyrical subjects vary greatly from song to song. For example, the first song "Beggar Turns Thief" follows a beggar's life turning towards desperation and theft: "Could you spare a dime sir? It's not that much to ask." "This will only cost a dime sir. That and your watch aswell." Taken from 2 consecutive verses the lyrics remain clear without sounding forced or "cheesy". Towards the end of the song as desperation increases the music follows the lyrical subjects appropriately. In another example "Flying Machine" follows man's eventual journey towards dominating the skies. One of the more uplifting songs, it portrays aspirations - "Next we'll take the stars". The song makes good use of the theatrical cabaret sound in the same way flying machines were glamorous concepts in the past. The last section of the 9 minute song suitably portrays success "We are now at altitude" with a dramatic build up to a final symphonic flourish.
Overall Impression — 10
Without trying to look like an elitist by giving all 10s the album's songs are in my opinion equal throughout, though the album was over 4 years in the making. Maybe that justifies it? The album is free download, so you don't need to buy it again! I highly recommend the album to fans of Porcupine Tree, Muse and other similar bands.