Review Summary: This album quenches the fix for Anthony Green; but also a fix for incredibly lazy and stale songwriting.
Circa Survive are soooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo f
ucking boring. There really aren’t two ways to put it; they take the most boring aspects of dredg, The Mars Volta, and occasionally Cave In and turn them into albums. Juturna
was saved by a few standout tracks, but On Letting Go
is lacking songs with a punch in addition to all of its other common faults.
I have to stress; On Letting Go
is not Juturna, Pt. 2
. It actually *is* Juturna
, with a different name and different lyrics. The aesthetic and sound of the album is nearly a pinpoint reenactment. Scientists wish they could have this kind of precise cloning ability with human embryos. The same soft intros, with a few hard riffs thrown into some to throw you off; the same two types of singing (soft high pitched-ness and kind of angry high pitched-ness); generally uninteresting instrumentation (besides some interesting rhythms from the drummer); and pretty contrived lyrics about who the hell knows. Hi, Anthony Green-Zavala.
The album doesn’t even start off interesting, with “Carry Us Away” playing like a really bad “x song off of Juturna
.” Despite the pretty neat drum part at the beginning (mostly due to good sound engineering), the song devolves into a pretty monotone song that attempts to build up some sort of tension and then…never release it. That seems to be Circa Survive’s big problem; a lot of the time, they attempt to build up all of these songs, and it ends up going nowhere because they can’t think of an effective way to release it.
Anthony Green sounds exactly like he did on Juturna
. This isn’t entirely a bad thing; he does have the makings of a great singer. What, with his uniquely pitched voice, strange tone, and way mixing with the music, he could definitely match lots of other great singers in the scene. But, he needs to show some variation in his singing, and perhaps tighten up, something he could have very easily done in the two years between Juturna
and this. Except…he didn’t. Thus, we can now safely say Anthony Green is just trying to take advantage of a unique voice without really trying to push it, which is a crying shame. He is still the saving grace (if you can call it that) of this album, and writes some workable lyrics (think of a much more relatable Cedric Bixler).
For other information on this album, see http://www.sputnikmusic.com/album.php?albumid=3547, and make the necessary corrections for tracks/albums/grammatical errors.
Seriously folks, I can’t stress how much of a non-progression this is. They add maybe one or two spacey elements in the vein of Jupiter
by Cave In, and hope people keep thinking they’re saviors of the whole post-hardcore/indie scene. Thing is, when you sound like a really, really boring Cursive/dredg mix musically, and an even more annoying Mars Volta/Coheed & Cambria mix vocally, you just can’t expect to be wowing people with your endeavors. On Letting Go
is listenable, and you may very well enjoy two or three songs. To be honest, I do like “The Difference Between Medicine and Poison is in the Dose” and “In the Morning Amazing,” but its not like they bring anything different from any of the other songs, I just find them to be perfections of what Circa Survive are trying to do. Fittingly, I don’t even like those songs much.
Thus, the story ends. On Letting Go
is your fill for more Anthony Green, but shows a surprising lack of progression. Kind of surprising, considering the direction he has taken the Sound of Animals Fighting, you’d figure this would follow that at least a little. Unfortunately, it just runs in place, watching every other scene band (even…From First to Last) show more change between albums.