REVIEW: IF THESE TREES COULD TALK – “The Bones Of A Dying World”
It is year 2012 and with us we’ve got ‘Red Forest’ by If These Trees Could Talk. A mesmerizing album that left us asking for more and a follow up record sometime soon. Statistically, good things have never ever come soon and closing in on half a decade later, comes ‘The Bones of a Dying World’. What can I say? They are back and stronger than ever! It was quite a long wait but here we are, making 2016 sound good.
With “Solstice”, the record starts off with a sound that is suggestive of a typical post-rock experimental sound. The song by itself is an idea that tries to capture the genre with some newer flavours. “Swallowing Teeth” starts off calm unlike the previous track. There is a lot of room in this album for the listener, I feel. This track isn’t really an ‘in your face’ type of song. Although the song sounds serious, in some of its parts, it is quite relaxing. I guess from “Earth Crawler” onwards, the album gets a clear identity. This song seems to be the next step in the album from the previous songs. It builds up to another level. It is the album’s identity in the sense that the listener can now know what really to anticipate from the album. This song also kind of creates a lot of tension and in some sense chaos in the album. Maybe it is just me. Far from the tension, comes “As the Smoke Clears”. This song is quite light and seems to be the opposite of the previous song in the atmosphere it sets out to create.
A favourite from the album is “The Giving Tree”. The textures in the intro are intriguing and despite carrying the ‘serious’ sound from the album, the song sounds positive and happy in its own ways. The layers of bass, guitars and drums are simply delightful. The voicing of the guitars is evocative of a singer sans the lyrics. This song is special. There is no reason why it isn’t. It incorporates everything post-rock, elements of ambience, and tonal bliss. ‘Enriching’ would be the best world to describe this awesome song! “Berlin” is another wonderful number off this record. This song is rich in emotions and textures. The leads and the guitar voicing are really good!
“One Sky above Us” concludes the album. With this song, the record comes to an end in a sort of a mild way- not too harsh and neither too gentle. It is a balanced song between two extremes in the mood the album tries to create.
‘The Bones of a Dying World’ beautifully takes over where the band left off with their previous record. The record is certainly a fine work. It would be pointless to compare this album with the previous one. There are finer parts in the newest offering that is suggestive of the band’s older and loved sound but then there is a lot to love in this one too. An instrumental album becomes a narrative that is individualistic and personal because it doesn’t suggest an overall definite theme lyrically. But I could not help wonder what would the titles imply in the bigger picture or if there is anything to imply at all in the first place. The sounds and arrangements on the record work amazingly well. There isn’t a moment on the album which suggests that the band has no solid direction. Everything in those regards are straightforward and nothing sounds random per se. The bass and guitar tones are heavenly. Apart from just giving a strong foundation to the music, the drums also add to the depth of the textures. In the midst of the light, ambient and occasionally heavy guitar sections, the bass plays the role of a common link between the sounds and tones of the music. The line-up for ‘The Bones of a Dying World’ comprises of Zack Kelly (drums), Tom Fihe (bass), Cody Kelly (guitar), Michael Socrates (Guitar) and Jeff Kalal (Guitar).