Rosetta
Wake/Lift


4.5
superb

Review

by GleamInRanks USER (16 Reviews)
February 11th, 2008 | 201 replies | 26,472 views


Release Date: 2007 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Guess which band I'm not going to mention.

10 of 10 thought this review was well written

Writing what might be one of the most ambitious debut albums in recent memory, Rosetta have certainly taken their name to new heights. With each release, Rosetta garner critical acclaim for their unique take on a seemingly stale spectrum of music. Dubbed as a "space-metal" band, this quartet still holds remnants of their roots in Philadelphia's hardcore- dominated scene. Not hardcore by any convention, Rosetta's music combines the punishing heaviness, elongated structures and bouts of ambient experimental passages found in other similar metal acts with an obvious hardcore aggression and influence. Rosetta's first release, The Galilean Satellites, is considered by many, myself included, a nearly perfect piece of atmospheric genius. The two hour long album is split between two discs, the first of which is Rosetta in their gruelingly heavy glory and the other exclusively displays dream-like ambience. What makes The Galilean Satellites a true work of art is the optional synchronization that accompanies the album. With three different and equally interesting lights that anyone can experience the album in, it proves difficult to think of the album as stale.

Where can a band as ambitious and talented as Rosetta take their music after such a intelligently massive release? Continuing with the same experimental elements that are found on both The Galilean Satellites and Project Mercury, a split record with friends and fellow Philadelphians Balboa, Rosetta have made their trade as exhilarating as ever. Their most concise release to date, Wake/Lift pushes the boundaries set by their debut and makes their formula all the more enjoyable.

Stating the obvious aspect of Wake/Lift; this record is ***ing dense. When the band decides to take on their heavier side, the amount of sound that the instruments and vocals produce can feel overwhelming at times. The guitarist, Matthew Weed, utilizes his love of thick, fuzzy distortions in addition to towering uses of reverb allow him to create immense atmospheres that drown out audiences. Placed in the back of the mix, the vocalist shares the same sense of atmosphere with distant and indecipherable shouts. With a truly unique vocal style, Mike Armine's work is as painful as it is powerful. Rosetta always layers their music to the utmost and this is one characteristic that I hold in high regard. Every section of Wake/Lift, whether it be electronic bleeps, strange noises, samples or a second guitar placed underneath the chaos, contains multiple layers. Take the first movement of "Lift" for example. A genuinely gorgeous guitar introduction, shrouded with delay, erupts into the relentless rhythms that Rosetta are known for. After the initial pummeling, the band breaks down into a noise passage that simply sounds otherworldly. These noises overlap into the second movement of "Lift", a track entirely comprised of electronics. The profound use of electronics on Wake/Lift accentuates the overall replay value of the record.

At nearly fifteen minutes long, "Temet Nosce" contains the slowest structure progression of any track on the album. With that said, the track also happens to be one of of my favorites from Wake/Lift though finding a weak track on here would be insanely difficult. The relaxing beauty of "Temet Nosce" changes the pace of the album and really makes the listener take notice. Again, the guitarist's masterful playing and layering feels damn near angelic by the end. With this track, Rosetta proves that their dynamic sense never falls into the ugly trap of sounding generic and predictable.

One other aspect of Wake/Lift I find particularly compelling when compared to other like-minded bands is the attitude of the rhythm section. Where some albums lose their momentum during long rants of nothingness, Rosetta develops an energetic and ,dare I say it, catchy rhythm to latch onto. These bass and drum breaks find themselves littered throughout the album and always deliver when everything else is minimal. "Red in Tooth and Claw" presents this perfectly. After the trampling of a distorted chord progression and a triumphant crescendo, the articulate rhythms of the bassist, David Grossman, and the drummer, Bruce McMurtie, add a certain accessibility to a song of this nature that I find intriguing.

With Wake/Lift, Rosetta has once again risen to the top of their game and released a stunningly fresh album. Much more credit is due to the fact that they have not repeated themselves and written something that feels separate from past endeavors into this territory. Successfully crafting an album that never feels drawn out for the sake of length, Rosetta's individual sound and compositional skills have continued to develop and rival that of their peers. The guitar work displays many distinct moods and styles throughout Wake/Lift and the vocals sound petrifying. A brilliant rhythm section ties together the various crescendos and in turn, they never feel scattered. Wake/Lift condenses every element of The Galilean Satellites and advances them. Rosetta, I applaud you.



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Comments:Add a Comment 
LifeInABox
February 11th 2008



3707 Comments


Kewl. Good review. I want to hear this legitimatly.

kjs7
February 11th 2008



5 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5 | Sound Off

good review. amazing album.

gasmaskman
February 11th 2008



1006 Comments


Finally someone reviewed this
Great album.

cometuesday
February 11th 2008



959 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

I just recently got this but I haven't had the right opportunity to sit and pay it attention. Needless to say I'm eager.

Killed4less
February 11th 2008



328 Comments


Rosetta has had me intrigued for a long time, I'll have to check this or their first album out soon.

omgwtfboogie
February 12th 2008



211 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

Not only does Rosetta rip off Neurosis in the same fashion as their contemporaries in the 'post-metal' genre, on Wake/Lift they even go so far as to copy a musical format Neurosis experimented with, the syncopated discs (one 'metal,' one ambient) they employed on their Times of Grace album.

Good job.

cometuesday
February 12th 2008



959 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Not so much.

kjs7
February 12th 2008



5 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5 | Sound Off

"Not only does Rosetta rip off Neurosis in the same fashion as their contemporaries in the 'post-metal' genre, on Wake/Lift they even go so far as to copy a musical format Neurosis experimented with, the syncopated discs (one 'metal,' one ambient) they employed on their Times of Grace album."

they ripped off the idea, but not really the sound. Rosetta and Neurosis arent that similar
This Message Edited On 04.21.08

Wizard
February 12th 2008



18793 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Not only does Rosetta rip off Neurosis in the same fashion as their contemporaries in the 'post-metal' genre, on Wake/Lift they even go so far as to copy a musical format Neurosis experimented with, the syncopated discs (one 'metal,' one ambient) they employed on their Times of Grace album.

I feel they put their own spin on Neurosis's music. Its hard not to be inspired by a band that has such a unique sound.

Gleam,
Do you know what the scariest thing is? I picked this album up yesterday and was thinking of reviewing it. Not only did you steal my Burst Origo review but now this hahahaha! I'm glad you reviewed it because I don't think I could have done as good a review as you have put forth here. You did this album some justice!
Another underrated album of 2007!

Digging: Triptykon - Melana Chasmata

FlawedPerfection
Emeritus
February 12th 2008



2806 Comments


I've wanted to check out this band for ages. This or The Galilean Satellites first?

Abaddon2005
February 12th 2008



684 Comments


Galilean Satellites, no contest. This is good, but not as good as.

rasputin
February 12th 2008



14504 Comments


great review, you've managed to make me want to hear this, which is a good thing.

eighty d
February 12th 2008



7 Comments


"What makes The Galilean Satellites a true work of art is the optional syncopation that accompanies the album."

Good review, but syncopation isn't the word you're looking for there. Synchronization would be better, but that sentence would still need to be reworked. Something to this effect perhaps:

What makes The Galilean Satellites a true work of art is the option of synchronizing the two discs on separate sets of speakers.

GleamInRanks
February 12th 2008



298 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Neurosis have always tried to make the textures in their music as uncomfortable as humanly possible, even in the minimal sections. But, of course, there are exceptions. With Rosetta, I don't see the same approach. Yes, Rosetta's music can be uncomfortable at times but that is usually due to the amount of electronics, layering, etc, not the note choices.

Thanks for the kind words everyone. I am surprised that this is the first review for this album (sorry wizard).

Good review, but syncopation isn't the word you're looking for there. Synchronization would be better, but that sentence would still need to be reworked.

Thanks, mixed up the two.This Message Edited On 02.12.08

Wizard
February 12th 2008



18793 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

No worries Gleam. I'm really starting to dig this album alot more.
To comment further on the ignorant comment about these guys sounding too much like Neurosis:
I found that Isis's first album, Celestial, was more influenced by Neurosis. But as time went on, Isis started creating their OWN sound. I find this album sounds a little more like newer Isis but I guarantee you, their next album will be its own beast! I find in the post metal world, it takes one or two albums for these bands to get their feet off the ground.

violentmog
February 15th 2008



73 Comments


Great review and music. I need to pick this up sometime...

HighandDriving
February 22nd 2008



3232 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

I gave this acouple of spins and I can see the musicianship and I like the droning sound but it just comes off as abit boring to me.
I'm not through with her yet though and I'll give her acouple more listens.

spoon_of_grimbo
March 8th 2008



2240 Comments


i've listened to the track "wake" on their myspace, and it's awesome. i've been really getting into this sort of spaced-out post-metal recently (through Bossk's two EPs mainly), it's strangely addictive.

can't wait to hear the whole album, and nice review btw!

spoon_of_grimbo
April 18th 2008



2240 Comments


listened to this a few times, and i gotta say, i think i like it better than "the galilean satellites." an amazing album, so atmospheric, the sort of thing you can put on, lay down, and get lost in.

cleary21
June 24th 2008



671 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

post metal is some weird stuff but its awsome nontheless, just starting listening like 5 minutes ago but ill rate it when im done



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