Battles
Mirrored


4.0
excellent

Review

by bananaoracle USER (4 Reviews)
October 29th, 2007 | 9 replies


Release Date: 2007 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Battles release one of the most varied and unique musical releases of the year.

Odds are if you listen to the radio, you listen to horrible music (and by radio I mean your standard commercial radio station that plays nothing but soft rock and games where you guess the song when it's played through a fart machine). I'm not saying that in a bad way, i'm saying it in hopes to open your mind to more unique and generally better music. Any band would do (well any band that is actually good) although today we are not talking about a group of artists, we are talking about Battles.

Battles is a four-manned American math rock band from New York City which consists of John Stanier (Helmet), Tyondi Braxon (son of jazz musician Anthony Braxon), Dave Konopka (Lynx), and Ian Williams (Don Caballero). While Battles is a math rock band, they really don't fit that aestetic as there sound ranges from hip-hop to indie and beyond. Tyondi's voice manipulation is truely bizzare as it makes him sound like he has swallowed a helium balloned and is auditioning to be on Alvin and the Chipmunks, it may be annoying at first but it will grow on you. Stanier's drumming is also worth noting. While it's not extremely complex, it hits you hard and keeps you interested in the music.

"Mirrored" is the title of their debut album after releasing EP's B and C which showed the bands diverse and unique sound. While those EP's started it, it's "Mirrored" that cements them as one of the best new bands of the past 5 years as this album is among one of the best the year has offered and as the year draws to a close, this very well may be the best album of the year.

The album opens with "Race In" which does an admirable job of opening the album and giving you a taste of what's to come with driving percussion and various toned synths. The next track and one of my favorites (as well as the lead off single and probably Battles most popular song) is "Atlas" and its easy to see why its one of there most popular songs. It is one of the few songs that exceeds 5 minutes in length that can actually hold your interest. I don't really know what there is to say about this song, you just have to hear it for yourself.

The remaining songs don't get to the level of "Atlas" but they sure get close. "Ddiamondd" is probably the most vocally clear song on the album although you still have no idea what Tyondi is saying at the speed of the vocals, Stanier also impresses with a brief drum solo in the middle of the song that isn't so much complex as it is fast and just fun. "Tonto" is another of the 5 minutes+ tracks and like "Atlas", it isn't boring. At times it may feel like it will drag but the band will throw in something that will keep your interest. "Leyendecker" is another favorite of mine even though it alienates many of the people who listen to it. It's driven by a somewhat hip-hop drumming beat and some heavier synth then usual and then the bizzare, dare I say it "***ed up" vocals come in which sounds like the chipmunks on meth and yes all of my comparisions compare something to some sort of drug.

The remaining songs to be honest are somewhat forgettable and while far from bad, Its difficult to remember how they all go. "Snare Hanger" and "Prismism" are the shortests tracks on the album and are just complex and interesting enough to be not considered filler although at times they get dangerously close. "Rainbow" is another intriguing song as it reminds me of the days of the SNES (Super Nintendo) and the games of yore like Super Mario World and Contra (funny fact: I own Shaq Fu).

"Mirrored" while not the masterpiece that some claim it is, is still an excellent album by a band that holds nothing but promise. With a diverse sound that simply can not be described by someone with a limited vocabulary such as mine, "Mirrored" is simply an excellent album and I highly recommend it to someone who is wanting to know what the future of music is and it's "Mirrored".

4.2/5


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Comments:Add a Comment 
Correction
October 29th 2007


188 Comments


The first sentence is so wrong that I'm not even sure what to say.
So I'll say that this is an alright review, but this album is a fuckin beast.

Justanothernimrod
October 29th 2007


478 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

ENOUGH REVIEWS ABOUT THIS THAT SAY THE SAME THING EVERY TIME.

please.

iarescientists
October 29th 2007


5863 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

GASP

i listened to the radio today

Justanothernimrod
October 29th 2007


478 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

*shock!*

IsItLuck?
Emeritus
October 29th 2007


4927 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

that first sentence is a terrible assumption. There are plenty of college radio stations that play great music. Odds are you have no idea what you're talking about.

Justanothernimrod
October 29th 2007


478 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

actually, this review doesn't make any sense, you've given it a really huge score but claim to only like half of it.

the duo of Prismism and Snare Hanger are absolute genius.

plane
Staff Reviewer
October 29th 2007


6094 Comments


john listens to bad music!

bananaoracle
October 31st 2007


28 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

By radio I meant commerical mainstream radio. I may not know what i'm talking about as there are only 2 radio stations where I live. One plays soft rock and the other a more talk show oriented channel. Both suck.

I have heard other radio other then that before, some of the genre specific radio is good and internet radio is fantastic but radio in general isn't a good place to find good music.

bananaoracle
October 31st 2007


28 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

I did like the record alot, its just I find the first half better then the second half. The first half is probably the best set of music i've heard all year and while the 2nd half isn't bad, it simply isn't great. I could listen to the whole album repeatly (sp?) but the 2nd half just isn't up to the 2nd half. Plus the album didn't seem superb or a classic to me. I thought alot about what I should give it and I stand by my original score.

And yes, this album has been reviewed far too much I just finally got to listening to it in full a few weeks ago. I'll probably my next review on an album that hasen't received many or any reviews.



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