Released: Sep 2, 2013
Genre: Indie Rock, Post-Rock, Folk, Experimental
Number Of Tracks: 8
Justin Vernon of Bon Iver moves in a bold musical direction with his new project, Volcano Choir.
UG Team, on september 06, 2013 2 of 2 people found this review helpful
Sound: American indie rock group Volcano Choir are making a bold return with their follow up studio album, "Repave." Volcano Choir first came together as a simple collaboration between Bon Iver's Justin Vernon and the group Collections Of Colonies Of Bees, however this side project quickly evolved into it's own entity entirely. The band began writing original material back in 2005, however it was until 2009 that Volcano Choir would officially introduce themselves to the music world. It was this year that the band would release their debut studio album, titled "Unmap."
Volcano Choir would soon be met with moderate mainstream success, with the bands debut album reaching a peak of number 92 on the Billboard Top 200 chart. The group's unique sound, comprised heavily of ambient and experimental elements, allowed "Unmap" to attract to a different audience and quickly won the band a noticeable fan following. Four years since the release of their debut album, and Volcano Choir are now ready to deliver their long awaited follow up.
"Repave" is a unique outing from Volcano Choir, that features plenty of musical experimentation however still contains enough hooks to tie each piece together. The album is immediately kick started with the track "Byegone," which begins with a few flickering electronic beats, before slowly building up in momentum with quiet guitar chords, bass rhythms and a delicate piano piece. Justin Vernon's instantly recognizable vocals echoes out over the pulsating bass beats, while again gradually building up the listener's anticipation just before being struck by an explosion of sound. // 7
Lyrics: Lead vocalist Justin Vernon is arguably the part of the Volcano Choir lineup that has the ability to tie this album together. When you have a symphony of such a diverse selection of instrumentation all performing together at the same time, in order to make an album great you need to have a singer that is capable enough to know when is the time to allow the actual instruments to take charge, and when it is time to capture the listener's attention. The song "Byegone" is a perfect example; when the instrumental side of the song winds down, Justin reduces the tone of his voice to near whisper. And as the song gradually picks up in both pace and volume, so does Justin, and the moment he exclaims "Set sail!" above a clash of piano playing and guitar chords, you are instantly hooked. // 8
Overall Impression: Volcano Choir give an interesting and consistently thrilling performance throughout their new studio album, "Repave." A worthy follow up to 2009's "Unmap," Volcano Choir deliver a collection of new compositions which are bursting with creativity, and will have you quickly reaching for the replay button. For any fan of Justin Vernon's work in Bon Iver, as well as any follower of the indie rock music genre, this is an album that comes highly recommended.