26 April 2011

The Climates - clap if he's in the kitchen. clap if he's on the couch. (2010)

The Climates aren't reinventing the instrumental math-rock wheel, they are just reactivating it for a few cycles. 

"Clap if he's in the kitchen. Clap if he's on the couch." is both their debut and already last full length, it is now offered for free at a low bitrate (128 kbps) on last.fm.

For sure, if you've been keen on this style and still are, you know such chords, progressions an breaks by heart. If only they had vocals.
With their absence, they lose the potentiality to make their music personal and develop a unique perspective, pulling the trigger for a minimal cult.

If The Climates are exploring math-rock, they did it with dynamism and emotions which sometimes tend towards slowcore or emocore without never embracing it totally.Coming from Northwest Ohio, They remind me of bands like Recuerdo, The Player Piano, Engine Down, C-Clamp, Seam or The Photographic, but without reaching the same level intensity on the length of this album.

With two guitars, a bass and a drummer who also plays trumpet at times, they deliver a pleasant album. I enjoy the bass intro of "Swarm", deep and melancholic, which finally turns into a powerful, yet lightly desperate melody. Follows the rainy and tense "I, Zanzibar", which sounds like cycling under the heavy rain.

A few rhythmical tracks seem more obsessed by technical achievement and fail at generating tension:  "Holiday Rustle", "Spencer's revenge", "Kyle's revenge" or "Neue Neue". They are lacking of meaningful false stops and heavy/ quiet, slow/rapid sudden changes, not injecting enough sense. Sometimes it turns into something gently playful, as with "Tiger Presents" but it never breaks the ice.

We return to grace with the rural charms of "Country Song" which shows a more appeased facet and smells like the freshness of a forest walk when the sun hits, with the speedy urban bike acrobatics of "Wifey" between slow rapid changes and an impression of weightlessness at times, and finally with the gravity feelings of "Eating the Shit out of your Life" where our feet are leaving prints on the humid ground.  

Not a perfect album but featuring a handful of nice compositions, this is a recommended stop for addicts of this style of music.

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