Review Summary: A crushing display of Post-Hardcore beauty.
If you've been following the Post-Hardcore scene, for the last half of the 'oughts progression has fallen by the wayside in favor of sea of freshly minted cookie-cutter acts ready for market consumption. Enter the Richmond, Virginia based trio City of Ships. Their 2009 debut full length, Look What God Did To Us, with it's mix of brooding Post-Metal atmosphere with Post-Hardcore sensibilities is proof that the spirit of albums such as Vheissu
can still be found if you know where to look.
Look What God Did To Us
is a force to be reckoned with. Its ebb and flow between monolithic slabs of menacing power chord crunch and ethereal, meandering leads is a musical whitewater excursion that begins ever so gently, only to climax with a drop over Niagara Falls. Taking cues from label mates and post-metal gods Rosetta, every song is a carefully choreographed work that, on the outside, resounds with aggression, but in time reveals its many intricacies. To put it simply, City of Ships are like ogres. Ogres are like onions; onions have layers.
City of Ships' singer/guitarst Eric Jernigan is more than just an axeman on Look What God Did To Us
. His precisely layered, semi distorted vocals are beastly. At times he recalls Thrice's Dustin Kensrue at his most extreme, albeit rougher around the edges. That doesn't mean he can't put forth a good croon when it's called for, as just like his guitar work, Jernigan's vocal stylings jump from a tranquil whisper to a menacing growl.
With the release of Look What God Did To Us
it looks as though City Of Ships might one day work their way up to the same hallowed status as Thrice, Isis, and Cave In. They are already off to one hell of a start. Now we just have to wait and see where they take their Post-Metal/Post-Hardcore behemoth next.