Fastball Music 2017
Progressing with flair, German band’s debut tracks their route to the other side of life.
If solemnity, self-awareness and humor are unlikely bedfellows, nobody delivered such a fact to this quartet… or, perhaps, they just didn’t care to reflect that on the group’s first longplay, which is better for it. There’s an orchestral grandiosity to “Fortune” – a bombast bound to be blown to bits on the bonus of the hilariously obscene “Jerz Off” – but the band’s epic bent is only a ruse designed to allure the listener into their world where balladry will turn out gloriously deceptive.
It’s impossible to escape the iron-in-velvet embrace offered by “Eternal Jack” whose many parts shift in cinematic fashion yet, as the pace quickens and acoustic transparency darkens, well-measured riffs cut the organ solemnity of “Mirrorplain” and classic hard ‘n’ heavy tropes crop up through theatrical setting to rock it in style. That’s how it goes for the groovy, nervous “Unsought” as opposed to the folk motifs and small choir of “Angel Without Wings” which melds bliss onto tragedy.
Still, it’s delicate “Reparation” that allows Christian Döring’s vocals show all their colors, and Jeremy Vollmert’s guitar lace to shine ever so brightly. Whether they reach salvation in the end remains a moot point but the process of getting there is riveting.