Maths
Descent


4.5
superb

Review

by Eric USER (161 Reviews)
November 19th, 2009 | 63 replies | 12,893 views


Release Date: 2009 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Listen up.

9 of 9 thought this review was well written

You haven’t heard this before. You may have heard sprawling soundscapes carefully executed. You may have even had the pleasure of hearing a wave, no, a tsunami of furious guitar envelope songs until all that’s left is furious riffs of gargantuan noise. Calculated and technical screamo has been done before. Maths aren’t the first band to provide listeners with caustic riffs and shrill screams that will make your hair stand on end until the next breath of fresh air, in relaxing instrumental form, grants you relaxation. Nor is this probably the first time you’ve heard hardcore that you find yourself hopelessly lost in, with enough dips and dives to leave you disoriented and dizzy. But let’s get one thing straight here, none of those other bands were Maths.

Following a split with fellow English screamo outfit, Throats, Maths gathered enough praise to garner a “who’s who” of band’s on the rise by a feature in NME. The natural stage of progression would be for Maths to start touring more regularly, reap more publicity, and basically move up in the business, right? Wrong, Maths drop their label in favor of honing their sound and recording a DIY record it themselves. The result is an enticing, and quite stunning output, Descent.

Descent would be impossible to encapsulate by simply describing the 12 songs, as the intensity of this experience spans much farther than the confines of its half an hour play time. It leaves you with a feeling in your stomach that can be best described between the words nauseating and staggering. Please excuse the superlatives, but Descent calls for them. From “Belief in Sorrow” all the way to “Belief In Hope,” Descent encompasses a full spectrum. The harrowing swells that begin “Belief in Sorrow” leave a distinct sense of anticipation that doesn’t disappoint when it materializes into piercing screams soon afterward. This gives way to a blatant disregard for tranquility and erupts in an explosion of technical riffs. It’s these and the chaotic percussion that compliment the screams, which are best described as adequate. While the vocals certainly add to the intensity and ferocity, I feel like I’ve heard them before in bands of similar caliber. Nevertheless, it’s hard to critique the sole qualities on Descent, as it’s the cumulative experience that overcomes these tiny flaws in an astonishing manner. Every song seems to have just enough power to stand out on its own from the rest of Descent, whether it’s because of a particular melody (the catchiness of “From Her Journals”), a moment of tranquility (the post-rock diamond in the rough, “... And Left to Die”), or even the all-out eruption of gushing intensity (penultimate track, “Branches”).

Taken as a whole, though, Descent manages to connect its 12 parts beautifully, they intertwine just like the roots on the spectacular cover. The technicality is definitely a strong point for Maths, but there’s something there that separates this from other technical works. Descent encompasses a sheer factor of extremes. It has the ability to be incredibly intense at times while managing to be incredibly tranquil at others and still progress fluidly and naturally entirely throughout. It’s an uncommon quality, and makes for a very distinct listening experience.

Descent is uncompromising and demanding, even in its short time span and relatively short track length. Nevertheless, this is a lasting and valuable experience. Chalk it up to sheer epic-ness perhaps, but this record takes methods and qualities that have been tried, used, and abused, and makes them sound fresh and dynamic. While the qualities that their music is comprised of aren’t inherently unique or specialized, they do a damn good job of owning those qualities, perfecting them Maths have cemented themselves firmly in their place in the screamo stratosphere, and if Descent is any indication, their raw and visceral aesthetic is going to be a force to reckon with in the years to come. Until then, though, Descent should surely be blasting from speakers all the way from their homeland of Britain to over here in the States.



Recent reviews by this author
Mogwai Rave TapesTau Tau Eyelids
Ghost Ship Golden GirlsCrosses EP
Warren Franklin Your Heart Belongs To The MidwestFrightened Rabbit A Frightened Rabbit EP
user ratings (96)
Chart.
3.8
excellent

Comments:Add a Comment 
SeaAnemone
November 19th 2009



19939 Comments


Seriously.
Read.
Listen.
Appreciate.

Digging: Natural Snow Buildings - The Night Country

EasternLight
November 19th 2009



2700 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

sounds really fucking good. good review. like the beginning

SeaAnemone
November 20th 2009



19939 Comments


maybe it's just me... but I'm really enthusiastic about this. I'm really curious as to if other people see the same thing in it. You can DL at SlightlyEpic's blog... http://apeswithguns.blogspot.com/

cvlts
November 20th 2009



8954 Comments


sh*t i heard about these guys through Throats.

have to check these guys out.
review is ace!
pos

SeaAnemone
November 20th 2009



19939 Comments


Please do!!

... and thanks.

liledman
November 20th 2009



3826 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

yer i just saw this on apes with guns, going to have a look now.

SeaAnemone
November 20th 2009



19939 Comments


Yea that's where I found it. Legit stuff on that site o'er there.

Zettel
November 20th 2009



589 Comments


Sounds very interesting. Pretty good review. I'll check them out.

SeaAnemone
November 20th 2009



19939 Comments


Thank you... I just hope this doesn't end up like my other reviews of a bunch of hidden gems this year... Rain Machine, Miles Benjamin Anthony Robinson, Noah & the Whale to some extent... Empire! Empire! was kindof an exception.

Zettel
November 20th 2009



589 Comments


"I just hope this doesn't end up like my other reviews of a bunch of hidden gems this year"

What do you mean? If you refer to the fact that a lot of great albums never get the attention they deserve, well, that's usually the case.

There's so much music to hear, that you stick to what's on the spotlight most of the time. At least is easy now for newer (and better) acts to get more attention outside the mainstream.

SeaAnemone
November 20th 2009



19939 Comments


Haha yeah zettel, know whatcha mean. Don't mind me, please. I'm just complaining.

Fapper
November 20th 2009



649 Comments


Legitimate review. Definitely going to listen to this.

SeaAnemone
November 20th 2009



19939 Comments


Let me know what you think after you give it a listen or two.

Homewrecker
November 20th 2009



231 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

From a first listen, this is really, really good. Feels like it's a step above the other bands that play this style.

SeaAnemone
November 20th 2009



19939 Comments


^That's the same thing I was trying to convey

Homewrecker
November 20th 2009



231 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

I think it's because this doesn't sound as forced as most screamo of it's kind. The song structures feel much more natural, not like they're trying to adhere to the overdone buildup-climax formula

SlightlyEpic
November 20th 2009



5780 Comments


I think it's because they're awesome. Great review man.

CompanionCube
November 20th 2009



977 Comments


should i get the throats split or this

SlightlyEpic
November 20th 2009



5780 Comments


this this this this this.

CompanionCube
November 20th 2009



977 Comments


guess ill get this then



You have to be logged in to post a comment. Login | Create a Profile





FAQ // STAFF & CONTRIBUTORS // SITE FORUM // CONTACT US

Bands: A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z


Site Copyright 2005-2014 Sputnikmusic.com
All Album Reviews Displayed With Permission of Authors | Privacy Policy