Review Summary: Give me music that feels like more than music.
A cinematic quality is ever-present on Rinoa’s 2010 release, An Age Among Them
. While it’s hard to pin the band from Essex under a specific genre, Rinoa elicit feelings altogether epic and uplifting, expansive and heavy. Please excuse the disparate descriptions, but An Age Among Them
induces the desire to spew a flurry of adjectives from my mouth, as the album commands interest and enthusiasm. An Age Among Them
is certainly not a release to take lightly, as it becomes evident merely a few minutes into “Past Maidens” that Rinoa, for better or worse, are extremely impassioned. An exuberant listen from beginning to end, An Age Among Them
provides the soundtrack to something more than a simple set of emotions. The feelings that Rinoa bring forth are neither simple nor straightforward. Instead, the album provides a rich, complex, borderline cinematic context and aesthetic that provides the album with an interesting quality that sets apart this excellent release from its neighbors.
It’s difficult not to make this out into more than it actually is, yet An Age Among Them’s
diversity and variability that blends together organically (mostly, other instances the switch-over from screaming to post-rock feels a bit disjointed) feels especially special. To describe the work as a product of Rinoa’s influences would be a bit hasty, as Mono and Envy are certainly lofty expectations to aim for. Yet, Rinoa make their presence known. The screams are always controlled and calculated, and while some may see this aspect as a positive, they become a bit predictable at times. If anything, though, this only adds emphasis to the beautiful melodies and build-ups abound on An Age Among Them
. The expansive guitars take a little longer to decipher than the vocals, yet the melodies are just
as emotive. This, the inspiring guitar lines, are what give Rinoa’s latest significant replay value.
While it’s hard to pinpoint specific highlights of An Age Among Them
(one of the distinct marks of an excellent album), the lingering songs provide moment after moment of emotive junctures. The soaring soundscapes give way to a larger-than-life quality that stands out through An Age Among Them
. In this case though, the result would be more aptly named a “larger-than-music” characteristic. Instead of a song-after-song monotonous routine, An Age Among Them
is a perfect example of how a product is more than simply the sum of its parts. The aggregate of Rinoa’s eight, protracted (most clock in around 8-minutes) songs on An Age Among Them
is an album that evokes sentiments grand and poignant. Through rich, layered post-rock interludes that break up the charismatic screams, Rinoa create an experience that feels cinematic in its entirety. While the flaws are evident (a bit disjointed, and sometimes too expansive that it seems to wander too far off) Rinoa wears them on its sleeve. The result, as stated before, is almost cinematic in nature- like Rinoa’s intention was to create something much more than 8 tracks, and it evokes images and stories to complement the melodies. One can’t help but feel moved by the completeness and impassioned fervor of an album that captures of feeling of something... something