Archives
Decline


4.0
excellent

Review

by Eric USER (161 Reviews)
April 22nd, 2010 | 111 replies | 16,437 views


Release Date: 2009 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Yet another screamo record of high quality destined to go unnoticed.

6 of 6 thought this review was well written

A slew of good bands have withered away, been washed down the drain lately. Tension stings some music, it seems. For better or worse, tension in the band has always been one of those pesky characteristics... like oil in water, it rises to the surface, makes itself known. Take a look at, well, any band that creates an album in the midst of a breakup. I wish I could point to Decline with an unwavering finger, claiming that Archives displays this. As is the case with most music listened to end on end,things just aren’t that simple. Rather, Decline shows its true colors. No, not purple and black... but a very grandiose and calculated, passionate and bleak blend of post-rock and screamo that creates something truly spectacular.

Archives are relatively unknown, but they exhibit many of the same brilliant qualities of their more prominent counterparts overseas, Funeral Diner, Love Like... Electrocution, among many others. It becomes easy to attribute the disparate levels of fame to Archives’ origin, Scotland. Not to accuse the band of being trite or unoriginal; but needless to say, it’s been done before. Hence, I always find myself asking myself the same question every time I hear a post-rock/screamo fusion: “What sets Archives apart from the slew of other talented bands in this particular facet of today’s scene?” Decline answers, “Not only do I adhere to the highest quality of said genre-combination, I do so with a certain flair. This can most likely be imputed to the sheer beauty of the post-rock melodies naturally dispersed among the unique, anguishing screams... all the while maintaining a level of control and prudence, exhibiting just the right amount of anguish combine resonating screams with-” Alright!... smartass, let’s not get too ahead of ourselves.

Decline, while it can be long-winded at times, performs beautifully when it comes to the crux of the sound they embody with pride- blending chaos and beauty. Archives aren’t entirely reliant on screams, though. Instead, the backbone often comes in form of the whispery melodies that accompany Decline. Archives impress with the unique ability to mesh together elements like a mad scientist. The difference lies not in the outcome, but their method. Instead of a “throw it against the wall and see what sticks!” attitude, Archives embody a deliberate and controlled intensity. This is why it’s so surprising that the band was undergoing a break-up during the recording of Decline. The album all sounds perfectly constrained, like they’re holding back from screaming too loud, or playing too fast. This facet of the sound gives way to a theme of music that feels more intelligent in nature. While I mean to take nothing away from their more chaotic counterparts, Archives handily express a mastery of songwriting and control that gives way to a listenable and interesting album throughout, without any sore spots or sore ears.

“Skvotter” marks the beginning of an album jam-packed of chilling screams dispersed intermittently between melodies stolen from the grasp of Mike Kinsella’s imagination. “Divine Circuitry” closes a record from an ephemeral, semi-obscure, Scottish screamo band that had better work up their sleeves in the future. Nevertheless, Decline stands as their lone footprint; and while it may not be deep in originality, it makes up for in tremendous, outstanding execution.



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user ratings (100)
Chart.
4.1
excellent

Comments:Add a Comment 
SeaAnemone
April 22nd 2010



19939 Comments


can I be ahead of Waior now? please?

Digging: Natural Snow Buildings - The Night Country

Slum
April 22nd 2010



2579 Comments


Excellent review as always.

btw you left out the 'r' in spectacular at the end of the first paragraph.

TheSpirit
April 22nd 2010



17641 Comments


album cover looks cool. will check out

Digging: Venus Star - Nigredo Expulsion

alachlahol
April 22nd 2010



7477 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

ugh, did you proofread this before submitting? here's a few examples:

1. 'tension in the band has always been one of those pesky qualities' - tension being exhibited as a quality when it's more of a vice. you could argue that tension was what helped Archives to craft a great album, but even then it's not a characteristic one aspires to attain, which is what quality implies.

2. 'I wish I could point to Decline with an unwavering finger, claiming this is the case for Archives. As is the case with most music listened to end on end for prolonged periods of time, though, things just aren’t that simple.' - two cases of redundancy here, especially with 'end on end' itself indicating a prolonged set of actions or events. 'though' can be removed completely as it creates unnecessary filler.

3. you say that Archives exhibit many of the qualities of their counterparts overseas, naming Mesa Verde when they are from the same country

4. 'It’s perfectly indisputable, though. Decline, while it can be a tad long-winded at times, really performs beautifully when it comes to the crux of the sound they embody with pride- blending chaos and beauty (if you’ll allow me to be overwhelmingly generic for a second).' - anything bolded can be completely eliminated; empty statements and inane babble. there's more to that second sentence which i have not mentioned.

i'm halfway through the review with just this shit up here ^. if you're really pushing for contributor or staff down the road, you need to catch a lot of these issues. you may have been tired or whatever the fuck, but it's inexcusable if you're trying to be taken seriously as a writer. many of the corrections mentioned should have been drilled into you through high school.

your first comment here regarding Waior is fitting. when i was reading through the review i was thinking to myself "wow, look at the gross overuse of adverbs and superlatives, reminds me of one of Waior's write-ups." this isn't an insult, but it is something i found ironic

keep it simple


666 comments, hail satan

SeaAnemone
April 22nd 2010



19939 Comments


shit... thanks a lot alachalaholloahol... damn, I'll fix those and proofread, it was a late-night whim to write it.

HighandDriving
April 22nd 2010



3274 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Good album, but I like The Fall of Boss Koala a lil more.

SeaAnemone
April 22nd 2010



19939 Comments


yea me too

SrightryEpic
April 22nd 2010



1197 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

boner

alachlahol
April 22nd 2010



7477 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

if you'd like me to go through the entirety of this for you i will (i'll need an email to send it to). you write a lot of reviews and activity is a good thing, i'm just trying to help

SeaAnemone
April 22nd 2010



19939 Comments


no, thanks I really appreciate the offer, but I'll see if I can do it myself.... I already see a few superfluous phrases that can be deleted.

SrightryEpic
April 22nd 2010



1197 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

hey eric can i be your editor

alachlahol
April 22nd 2010



7477 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

a lot of reviews spam flowery wording when it's really not needed to get the point across. doesn't need to be pretty all the time

SrightryEpic
April 22nd 2010



1197 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

[IMG]http://img13.nnm.ru/4/4/3/1/e/f61cc7bca189e8fdd72afdd629f.jpg[/IMG]

the album cover demands flowery wording

SeaAnemone
April 22nd 2010



19939 Comments


idk, can you say things like "your obtuse and superfluous verbiage perfectly obscures the already disconcerting significance you fag!"

if so then ya

SrightryEpic
April 22nd 2010



1197 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

no but I can correct things like 'spectacula' using only the tip of my penis and the 'r' key

alachlahol
April 22nd 2010



7477 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

my review of this album would just say: Good album. Good riffs.

alachlahol
April 22nd 2010



7477 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

tarantular

SrightryEpic
April 22nd 2010



1197 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

i like the bits with the dramatic guitar

alachlahol
April 22nd 2010



7477 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

there is so much passion and emotion in this album what genre is it

AggravatedYeti
April 22nd 2010



7684 Comments


not that the concern isn't warranted, and I can see you're just trying to help buuuutttt

You may have read a little too deep into this Alac, there is a difference between professional pieces written for an online music magazine and say Reuters.

review was good Eric, not your strongest, but whatever I still want to hear this record now so...



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