Could anyone really have guessed ten years ago that you would find emo merging with post-rock? In the late ‘90s bands like Godspeed You! Black Emperor, Mogwai and Do Make Say Think weren't on the radar within the collective conscious of pop culture and mainstream music. Things started to change when popular shows like Friday Night Lights decided to use a band like Explosions In The Sky to compose original music. It’s pretty safe to say post-rock is more affluent than ever and while not quite penetrating to a level like that of Katy Perry or Justin Beiber I wouldn’t be surprised if the majority of run of the mill music fans will have heard of the genre in five years. This all takes me to Riverbeds. Forming in 2010 Riverbeds is blending emo and post-rock and making it work.
There recent release What You Keep Close is a piece of work that I could not only see resonating with mainstream music fans but the opinionated hipster subculture as well. Perhaps even providing the impetus for fans of more mainstream-minded music to check out some of the post-rock bands who might not have otherwise been on their radar.
The four-piece consisting of Fred Béland (guitars). CharlesAndré Chamard (drums/vocals), Alexandre Duhamel Gingras (bass) and Vincent Pigeon (vocals/guitars/keyboards) could very well be the best cross breeding of post-rock and emo I have heard to date. That’s a bit of a backhanded compliment because the truth is there are a only a handful of bands right now attempting this symbiotic relationship.
It’s apparent on the first track “Forth” that the band is incredibly in the pocket and doesn’t take any shortcuts. They implement time signatures besides the typical 4/4, overload you with creative guitar parts and know how to build a song.
It’s really a precursor for what to expect for the remaining five songs. The verse on “Doubling Down On Diamonds” surrounds you with delayed, reverb laced guitars you would expect from post-rock but once the chorus hits it contains the intensity and visceral power you would expect from a emo punk band.
On “Homa Lone” the band continues to flex their muscles by pulling off-kilter timing with ease while “Numbers” soars with some of the most impressive guitar work. The band arguably saves the best for last with “Always More.” What You Keep
Close works not only because it contains good music but also because it displays how music can evolve. The future is now - so take a listen to What You Keep Close.
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