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Ranked: Thee Silver Mount Zion

genre: post rock/minimal classical/minimal classical drone. similar to GSYBE but stands alone with its own unique qualities and feels. contains violin[lots], piano, vox, bass, drums, guitar
1Thee Silver Mount Zion
Horses in the Sky

4.5 - Wow! This release is incredible and the interesting thing is the incredible'ness may not be readily apparent as the album begins with the vocalist singing full out in a kind of post-punk tone with a backing vocalist using a delayed harmoning technique over slight tinge of a 'western' feel. It's all kind of chaotic at first to say the least but everything begins to change around the 4 minute mark with a strong dynamic shift into a minimal atmosphere of delectable minimal inducing flavors. This album mainly succeeds not only in the musical department but also in the lyrical department. With outright sung sometimes spoken vocals this upfront approach allows everything to be audible and decipherable because the subjects touched on are very personal as the vocalist chants all the different things he lost friends to, and mainly touching on the big picture that these things are a product of our system that we live in. You can feel the emotion in the vocal approach and with the back instruments especially the violins, the emotions are taken even further and everything manages to fit into a solid picture and its hard to turn your head away from this musical display that is before you. "When the world is sick, can no one be well". Even during repeated sections like this the building vocal layers are perfect as well. In fact, the only thing that makes this album not perfect is the few moments of minimalism that could have been taken further. The foundation at those moments are perfect but the lack of building on that foundation prevents my 5. A personal album with endeavors to touch the heart and soul for a person looking for honest music this is where you need to go.
2Thee Silver Mount Zion
He Has Left Us Alone...

4 - A great start to TSMZ's LP catalogue. The intro skit dialogue is fantastic and well fitting with skits of this preacher preaching a sermon from gospels about peace and security declared by the nations being a sign of the times and the end of this system of things and how Jesus said to stay on the watch but its arranged in a cool way with overlapping violins. I'm not sure if these guys are christians or not or if they're speaking against it, i really couldn't tell but the after the skits we have building violins that just keep getting deeper and deeper in emotions and yet they are inviting and somewhat catchy while remaining deeply filled with ethereal emotions. The interplay of violin and piano is just perfect and you can tell with TSMZ's first LP release that they had a visionary goal in mind with this release but the sheer attention and detail given to each moment. On this album you will notice some strong GSYBE and even Maudlin of the Well vibes[clean sections] in the latter half. This would be a 4.5 for me but the latter does become a little complacent but its still very effective. Highly recommended.
3Thee Silver Mount Zion
Fuck Off Get Free We Pour Light on Everything

4 - With TSMZ's newest released set around early 2014 I now know there will be at least one excellent album for the year. They continue to grow in their song-writing maturity and like some of their best releases they continue to bring the 'feels' on this montrous display of fun. Yes, I said fun. I don't think I've ever heard TSMZ so playful and fun without sacrifices what makes them great, which is the ability to deliver thought-provoking visionary music. There's a good use of dynamics throughout the album which in a way, effectively combines almost everything they've done up to this point. But it's not chaotic, it's well arranged. The second track is one of my favorite moments on this album because it uses this simple-effective riff supported by brilliant vocal melodies and droning fuzz that builds and builds like having sex and climaxing at the end. But it doesn't just build, it also complaces for moments while carrying established emotions without anything being lost as if during the sexual encounter you deside to lay off a little so you don't bust too early. The foreplaying violins are littered all throughout the album. Now although the sex could be much better if more anal sniffing was involved or something like that but its still dam good sex. Production is quite solid on this album as well but it could be a tad bit less trebly. Like '13 Blues for Thirteen Moons' there's a strong rock emphasis here too and the use of violin over the dense rock atmosphere's makes me wanna hire a violinist for my work too because who woulda thought violins could makes music this intense! Like I know humans can whistle and sing butt wouldn't it be cool if we could extend like a pub hair out of our bodies and countercross stroke it for emotive violin'like sounds? Overall, you can tell that TSMZ wasn't just trying to make another album, they delicately spent time with this puppy and because of that you will find MANY elements here that can't be found on any of their previous albums. The full length is streaming on youtube right now so you better get on that before it gets taken down!!
4Thee Silver Mount Zion
13 Blues for Thirteen Moons

4 - 13 Blues for Thirteen Moons is a successful album because the more apparent rock displays are very well composed and actually give off quite a bit of psychadelic stoner feel from times because of the mixing of tones. These elements with the typcial TSMZ flare of violins and layered vocals are just perfect. In fact, up to this point there has never been this much rock music in a TSMZ album before and its refreshing to see that they can successful in all of their established musical endeavors wether its psych post rock or minimal classical drone. The use of dynamics are very well warranted here too they know just when to throw tremelos over dense atmospheric sections to take it to the next level and they know how to properly drop the dynamics as well with droning violines tones. Man this band is quickly becoming one of my favorite bands ever, not that I didn't always like them! My listens keep becoming more and more enjoyable every time I revisit them.You'll even get some jazz rock on this album as well which is perfectly timed around the third quater of the LP. Ends strong as well.
5Thee Silver Mount Zion
Pretty Little Lightning Paw

3.5 - Finally an EP worth hearing. There's some good solid music here despite the annoying intro with sounds of the band messing around or something like that. This doesn't really aim to be a masterpiece but its still great because the music is moving and emotional and simplistic catchy yet darkened moods are attracting. In fact, as a full length with more dynamics this could easily be a 4 and rival some of the other higher rated albums on this list.
6Thee Silver Mount Zion
This Is Our Punk-Rock, Thee Rusted Satellites Gather and Sing

3 - TSMZ's third LP begins with a good start from their last average LP. The beginning is enticing and trance-like with muted strick plucks and layered harmonizing operatic hymned vocals. The vocals hit a peak and cease and the established emotion is held and controlled by a plain field of instrumental textures that are gracious and enchanting like a white swan admist a swamp's clarity growing like the effects of a sunrise. Suddenly drums kick in with a bass guitar and post rock goodness is borne with progressions of furtherance. Now, although this third LP starts off strong it doesn't stay that way. From here we go through more Maudlin of the Well feels which is never bad except that it feels kind of ripped and then follows by some more slightly above work which is nothing more than minimal ambient classical works with some random vocals over it. Even the closer is mediocre to average but its not necessarily bad though. This is an album with much potential but you can easily tell the focus of emotion is gone from their grand first LP.
7Thee Silver Mount Zion
Born Into Trouble As the Sparks Fly...

2.5 - no although this second LP release aspires to be emotional/moving the movements feel too cliche at times and expected so that it doesn't impress on the emotion as the previous first LP release. Also, the notes and chords don't contain enough emotional weight to stir up anything within the soul. The music is still good but its just not emotionally effective. It takes about 20 minutes into the record for the 'feels' to come out. Now once feels start to come out it last for like 5 minutes then the dynamic feel completely drops out to slight above average feel of weightlessness so dissapointing in that respect too. Lastly, the ending is average and feels pointless. Decent overall and sometimes good but overall, average.
8Thee Silver Mount Zion
Kollaps Tradixionales

2.5 - Unfortunately another average release by these guys. Now there's good moments here and there but this is just some average rock with occasional moments that get better because the drums and violins but can I really call it good because of that? In fact, you'll notice that they've recycled some of their riffs from past works too on this which I haven't seen before in their discog. The closing track is probably the best thing about this album.
9Thee Silver Mount Zion
The West Will Rise Again

2.5 - There's nothing really wrong here except again, the music is average and doesn't induce any emotion in me. It's kind of like eating soup that contains healthy ingredients, but there's no salt! Kind of a pointless EP imo.
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