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REVIEW: Explosions in the Sky - The Wilderness

REVIEW: Explosions in the Sky - The Wilderness

By: Jess Sanchez
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A review of the Explosions in the Sky album The Wilderness.

 

Explosions in the Sky are back with their first studio album since 2011 with The Wilderness. The album is completely instrumental, no vocals whatsoever. This is typical of Explosions in the Sky and the band has put their unique post-rock sound to good use over the past five years producing movie soundtracks.

 

Explosions in the Sky have undoubtedly grown in the past five years, figuratively and literally, adding more instrumentation besides the bass/guitar/drums standard to The Wilderness. Piano, for instance, provides an ethereal aspect to the overall sound, and while it's quite pretty, I can't help but wonder if some of the last five years of doing soundtrack music didn't spill over into this album.

 

The album is undeniably beautiful but there wasn't enough present in the music to win me over in any capacity. I put this album on and it soon became background noise, each track indistinguishable from the next. Every song had the opportunity to reach some kind of triumphant or dazzling crescendo, but one never came, only hints of what could have been.

 

Listening to this album, really listening to it gave me the familiar frustration of trying to read an uninteresting textbook paragraph to absorb the information, but just ending up reading the same four words over and over again. As this was my unfortunate experience with The Wilderness, I can't say I noticed any emotional or stylistic changes dynamic enough to distinguish each track from the other.

 

With that being said, it's not as if this album isn't lovely, and it is genuinely nice to have on in the background if you're feeling mellow. Explosions in the Sky considers themselves a rock band in earnest, but I would never think to categorize them as such.

 

The emotion conveyed by any style of rock music just isn't evident in this album but it's obvious that they do excel in soundtrack music, as any song on The Wilderness would be greatly enhanced by visual accompaniment.

 

Explosions in the Sky - The Wilderness


Listen to a song by clicking on a title below:

Click to Play Explosions in the Sky - The Wilderness (Full Album Stream)

 
 
 
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