Red Sparowes
Aphorism


3.5
great

Review

by Jared W. Dillon USER (118 Reviews)
July 30th, 2008 | 16 replies | 10,414 views


Release Date: 2008 | Tracklist

Review Summary: loss of guitarist provides Red Sparowes with a softer, more emotional sound.

Red Sparowes has always come off as one of the more literate post rock bands. While their record concepts have ached of forced thoughtfulness the music the group produces has never felt the least bit cluttered. Most post rock groups simply attempt to bend the minor scale as far as it will go while Red Sparowes take a much more tonal approach to their sound. At times this works brilliantly creating beautiful soundscapes with unanticipated twists. Other times the band is left sounding extremely unmoving; example being their first LP which while interesting suffered due to its seemingly useless noise interludes. Luckily "Aphroisms" suffers none of the group’s flaws from their debut instead mimicking the more developed side of their second LP. As post rock bands have become a dime a dozen it is always great to hear a band be as good as Red Sparowes at their own little niche of the genre. Important to Red Sparowes is the sophistication of their songs not the textural beauty and this is why they come off as a more intelligent version of groups like Explosions in the Sky and Russian Circles.

"Aphorisms" is an important record for Red Sparowes because of the loss of previous guitarist Josh Graham. Graham is known for his textural tone as well as his involvement in Neurosis and Battle of Mice. In my opinion he is one of the more successful post metal guitarists due to his ability to craft dynamically heavy yet melodic displays. This helped Red Sparowes in the past as the metal edge was beefed up in part because of Graham. On "Aphorisms" we can feel the change of sound yet it doesn't come off as a bad one. Red Sparowes have just grown a little lighter as well as a little more rhythm based. This change may have nothing to do with the departure of Graham but whatever the reason "Aphorisms" is a great EP showcasing Red Sparowes evolving sound. Drummer David Clifford provides a dynamically interesting performance that helps blend the soft and loud changes effortlessly. Guitarists Bryant Meyer and Andy Arahood create gorgeous melodies that echo traces of math rock complexities. “Error Has Turned Animals to Men, and to Each the Fold Repeats” is a perfect example with its hallowing guitar laden conclusion being both cathartic and compositionally developed. In all honesty this EP probably represents the group at their most efficient. The band has honed in the lengths of their songs and put a more prominent effort in being a little more emotionally and it pays off in heaps.

Fans of Red Sparowes that have yet to hear this record may be feeling a little anxious do to how radical I've kind of implied it sounds. To be honest this simply isn't as vastly different from their other material as I imply. The lengthy song titles are here with the opener being label as "We Left the Apes to Rot, But Find the Fang Grows Within" and the basic structure of the songs are the same as before. Said opener is a trip between a mathy introduction that forms its way into one of the band's most gorgeous sections through a transition of white noise. "Aphorisms" comes off as a record where the band is using the same pieces as always just sort of mixing up how those pieces are arranged. This philosophy reveals itself to be both the records strength and flaw. In terms of the Red Sparowes discography "Aphorisms" should probably be labeled as the most cohesive piece, but in terms of the entire genre of post rock the group is simply not doing anything original here. The band is simply a very good example of modern post rock and if you are approaching the record with anything but that in mind be prepared for a disappointment.



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user ratings (64)
Chart.
3.4
great

Comments:Add a Comment 
Athom
Staff Reviewer
July 30th 2008



17189 Comments


The first track is incredible and the other two songs just seem kinda eh compared to it.

Kiran
Emeritus
July 30th 2008



6000 Comments


this band has always been solid so i'll definitely look into this

Digging: Cam'ron - Purple Haze

Doppelganger
July 30th 2008



3124 Comments


Yeah, past two albums were pretty amazing for a 'standard' post rock affair.

gmoneyguy
July 30th 2008



108 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0 | Sound Off

It was kind of a let down tbh.

Hewitt
July 30th 2008



371 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

I love their two full lengths, looking forward to checking this out quite a bit.

Kage
July 30th 2008



1173 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

This is one of the post rock bands I still really dig. I'm excited about hearing this.

Dancin' Man
July 31st 2008



719 Comments


I should get my hands on this. This band was cool to me once.

Kage
July 31st 2008



1173 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

yeah i still remember reading your review for at the soundless dawn soon after i bought it

good times

Kage
August 2nd 2008



1173 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Good music.

CushMG15
August 2nd 2008



1802 Comments


In the first sentance of the first paragraph, it's "due", not "do". Your review was solid tho, good job. I've been meaning to look into these guys for quite awhile now, just haven't gotten around to it. I'll probably start with something else. Again, nice job.

Iluvatar
Staff Reviewer
August 3rd 2008



16081 Comments


Slightly underwhelmed by this but it was enjoyable

Hewitt
September 21st 2008



371 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

This was good though I prefer their full lengths.

Slimjim367
May 9th 2009



512 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

again
first song is amazing
but the other two are jsut god
not great
not bad
just good
passable

tomr4
October 6th 2009



191 Comments


I actually think every track on here is pretty great, easily on the same level as every red heart...

ThePalestMexican
January 7th 2010



2816 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

A lack of heaviness disappoints me

purty707
August 10th 2013



15 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

pretty disappointing



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