When it comes to choosing the best Off Minor album, you're better off trying to choose between your parents. Formed from a previous screamo band in Saetia, Off Minor have 4 LPs and one could argue they are all classics; Off Minor have clearly had the best career in screamo's vibrant history. Problematic Courtship
raged with incredible emotion and live performances, Innominate
raped senses and babies, and Some Blood
has one of their best songs in the epic closing track "Practice Abscense". And then there is The Heat Death Of The Universe
which combines all of these elements from the other albums into one perfect display of emotional hardcore. The intensity, lyrical prowess, and slick musicianship conform into a ball of blazing fury and beautiful interludes.
Forget the jazz overtones and the woods-like aesthetic; Heat Death...
is an excersize in jumping the f**k around and breaking ***. Take the first track for instance, the title track; it ebbs and flows with supreme conviction and ass-kicking beatings. The song moves quickly until it reaches a peak that is showcased a few times over, featuring a metal-like riff and a violent scream of "I AM!!
that explodes into your face. This is but one of the strengths of Off Minor's songwriting: they know where the really good parts are and they utilize them in their songs over and over again. The track ends in another climax with introspective lyrics not found in most emo these days; "This time we have permanence / This time we are separated by an infinite distance"
adds another complex layer of emotion and wonder that really elevates the music.
It could be argued that The Heat Death...
is half destruction and half beauty. For every chaotic moment, there is a momentary hole in time to catch your breath for yet another pounding. "This Is A Hostage Situation" showcases this give and pull of dynamics the best on the album. The first half of the song is crazy and skramz influenced enough to make you think it will be that way the entire way through. The 2nd half of the track is where things get very interesting; the music suddenly halts and all that is left is a constant pulsing bass that underlines a wonderful guitar lead that continues until a peak of fury. This roller coaster ride continues for a few more hills until the track ends with no sound other than the same bass pulse that was mentioned earlier and the effect is somewhat astounding.
The Heat death...
continues relatively in this same manner; some tracks shake you to the core with chaos and some are there to lend you a hand in finding yourself after all the craziness. As insane as it may sound to an outsider, the album taken as a whole is a rather easy listening experience for the genre as Off Minor are just so good at keeping a song flowing effortlessly. Whether it's the slow burning yet sexy instramental "Punch for Punch" or album highlight "Staring Down The Barrel Of Limited Options" (which features outstanding lyrics by the way), The Heat Death Of The Universe
will excite any fan of the genre and should be considered essential listening for all you crazy f***s out there.