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Stealing Axion: Moments

Last time I wrote about Stealing Axion, I mentioned that I was going to be seeing them at a local venue in Salt Lake City. Before the show, I spoke to a couple members of the band at their merchandise booth and was growing more and more excited to see them finally take the stage. Unfortunately, the night grew later and later and the schedule seemed to fall further and further behind. As the night wore on (and before Stealing Axion was even able to set up their gear), I had to leave. Nothing against the band; I had a long drive ahead of me and just needed to get home. Sorry guys; I hope you'll find your way back to my town shortly. I'd really like to catch your show.

As for their album, I'm pleased to report that it is a solid release, one that should definitely attract a large following. My suggestion for these guys (and their record label) is that they promote Stealing Axion as much as possible. They should set up an official website, tour like crazy, and generate a great deal of excitement about their music. These guys have the makings of something fresh, but they'll need to find a core following. Musically, I suppose that Stealing Axion would most likely be described as Metalcore, even though such labels are getting increasingly difficult to use, let alone understand. What I liked about this album, though, is that the Metalcore elements are routinely mixed together with a progressive quality that makes the music consistently interesting. These guys regularly sound as though they are trying to create new musical textures, sounds, and themes. One thing I noticed about this album is that there's quite a bit of background sound going on, sometimes almost to the point of distraction. Half way through "Collapse," for example, the guitar gets a heavy pedal treatment that is interesting, if slightly repetitive. On the same track, there are keyboard sounds, pulses, and melodies that occasionally seem to stray a little from the song.

If this album has a vice, it's that the songs are sometimes too long. I certainly don't think Stealing Axion should write short, radio-friendly, songs, but it wouldn't hurt to cut back on some of the repeats from time to time. Several of the tracks would be stronger if they were 30-60 seconds shorter. This isn't always true; the last two tracks--which make up about 20 minutes on their own--are quite compelling and need the time, I think, to develop their ideas. Still, the album's musical ambition is readily evident and doesn't necessarily need the length of the songs to underscore the creativity in the songwriting. The playing is strong on every track and the alternating clean / dirty vocals were used sparingly.

There are times on this album when I thought I was hearing some of the best recent metal in this particular style. My own tastes tend a little more to the Doom / Stoner / Sludge side, but as I listened to Moments I couldn't help but turn back, again and again, to favorite passages, riffs, and melodies. This album works on several levels, but is at its best when it pushes the music toward refreshing and interesting new directions. Highly Recommended.

Track Listing:
1. Mirage of Hope
2. Solar
3. Everything or Nothing
4. 47 Days Later
5. The Unwanted Gift
6. Eventide
7. Collapse
8. It's Too Late Now
9. Sleepless
10. Moments Part 1
11. Moments Part 2

Added: September 4th 2012
Reviewer: Carl Sederholm
Related Link: Band Myspace Page
Hits: 2106
Language: english

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