Explosions in the Sky
Take Care, Take Care, Take Care


2.0
poor

Review

by Eric USER (161 Reviews)
April 17th, 2011 | 202 replies


Release Date: 2011 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Tepid Fizzling Situated Only Slightly Above Sea Level

As difficult as it is to believe, there was a time in history when Explosions in the Sky's brand of post-rock was novel, exciting. Then again, other fresh ideas at the time of The Earth Is Not A Cold Dead Place’s release included the launch of iTunes and the U.S. planning an invasion of Iraq… dating the post-rockers, but not as much as the troupe of copy-cats have dated them. Point is, it’s been a while since EITS were in the heyday of sprawling, simplistic, post-rock masterpieces. Oh, how far they’ve fallen. It’s said that necessity is the mother of invention--- this makes sense in regards to Take Care, Take Care, Take Care because it’s an album devoid of urgency, emotion, fervor, but most of all, devoid of a want to create something new, better. Take Care displays Explosions in the Sky proving they’re still intent on manipulating the slowly-building crescendo style of post-rock they perfected a decade ago with a single song, “Your Hand In Mine.” Problem is, the formula has its limits. Since The Earth Is Not A Cold Dead Place, the horse has been long-deceased and was being bludgeoned in its grave time and time again (please Mono, put down that club). Take Care adds nothing new to the now-stagnate equation, and Explosions In The Sky are rendering themselves as redundant as their album title. On the lackadaisical venture, they come up short in execution, and thematically EITS merely wallow in the wake of the emotional hard-hitters that made the Texans famous in the first place.

Overly simplistic and lazy, Take Care is an album that wastes no time in revealing itself. “Last Known Surroundings” begins on a low note, with its lethargic tempo and general uninventive nature. The strings, like old men getting up from the recliner, slowly and hesitantly gather to form busier melodies and compositions; but at no point does the song display the band’s compositional skills. I know they exist, somewhere beneath the triteness, but they lie muted under the well-worn cliches that EITS saw fit to include on this track alone. Vague spoken-word sample? Check. (Irritatingly) slow crescendo that fails to truly make a strong presence? Check and check. Thin, overused melodies? Check. It’s not simply that Explosions in the Sky chose the wrong formula and therefore Take Care is irrefutably bad, it’s that they did so with no energy, no chutzpah. Invested into their singular masterpiece, “Your Hand In Mine,” for instance, was a definite human quality that made it one of the most sublime songs of the decade. Rather, the post-rockers are now shadows of their former selves, as that sublimity has morphed into complacency and mundanity. While ‘Last Known Surroundings” seems to be the qualitative nadir of the band’s apparent lack of creativity (they can only go up, from there), the subsequent quintuplet of tracks proves to hold little in terms of redeeming factors.

Remember when Explosions in the Sky were, well... somewhat explosive? “Trembling Hands” performs the best imitation of their older work (and better yet, it’s condensed into three minutes), but it doesn’t excuse the stagnate, tepid pollution that surrounds it. It succeeds in part because it imitates their past work (namely that of How Strange, Innocence; but on the other hand, there’s not that much differentiation throughout their discography anyway). As sad as that sounds, it’s true. Before, their minimalism achieved significance, it had a plot. On Take Care, there’s a distinct lake thereof. Each song meanders a bit aimlessly and never reaches a destination. There’s such little depth in-between the sad strings and balmy tunes: it’s like the type of movie that just begs viewers to walk out halfway through due to sheer boredom and predictability. Take Care, Take Care, Take Care, or alternatively, “Explosions in the Sky LITE” is a watered-down album that fails to ever achieve any of the beautiful simplicity that so many of their earlier tracks, let alone albums, attained. It’s the same formula, with significantly less results.

The critical ears of listeners who don’t enjoy Take Care, Take Care, Take Care might hear faults in the more loose-natured compositional styles of the album, the lack of any sort of defining highlight or overarching theme, or perhaps the absolutely atrocious cover that (fittingly) accompanies the album. Rather, whatever the effects, the cause seems to be a lack of drive or motivation from Explosions in the Sky. “Your Hand In Mine” (referred to repeatedly for good reason) was a song that rendered feelings of speechlessness and wonderment, no hyperbole intended. Take Care, Take Care, Take Care couldn’t differ more. Like a cold, dead place, it feels purposeless-- even more so due to the forced inclusions like handclaps and gang vocals strewn about haphazardly. There was a point early in the decade when EITS were an exciting gateway: they were a gateway to purely instrument music, to post-rock, to a mesmerizingly emotive track or two. Take Care imitates this gateway band, doorway on cover and all, but loses all sight of where that gateway leads to-- in this case, somewhere not worth entering.



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 (602)
Chart.
3.3
great
other reviews of this album
1 of

Comments:Add a Comment 
wyankeif1337
April 17th 2011


6739 Comments


i refuse to believe that this is bad.

eternium
April 17th 2011


16338 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Still want to listen to this but the reviews aren't helping my urgency.

DarkNoctus
Contributing Reviewer
April 17th 2011


8821 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

i refuse to believe that this is bad.

hate to disappoint bro :[

Digging: Darkspace - Dark Space III I

Obfuscation24
April 17th 2011


3939 Comments


:/

ConsiderPhlebas
April 17th 2011


6157 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Still not sure how I feel about this album. They can do a lot better.

Aids
Contributing Reviewer
April 17th 2011


23826 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

nice review, I knew this was coming. I thought I would agree with you, but I just finally listened to this last week and I've got to say, I'm pleasantly surprised. Yes it's generic and kind of cliche, but I really enjoy most of it. a 3.5 for sure.

Enotron
April 17th 2011


7695 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

damn just wrote my review on this

WasWas
April 17th 2011


50 Comments


submit it. a different perspective is always nice, as long as it's well-written.

Aids
Contributing Reviewer
April 17th 2011


23826 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

yeah there will probably be a dozen or so reviews for this anyway. might as well post it before people start with those "omg a review for this" comments

SeaAnemone
April 17th 2011


20310 Comments


like I said on craigy's... it seems like everyone is hearing the same things when they listen to this, it's just hard for me to enjoy it at all, really.

Digging: Holy Sons - Lost Decade II

Willie
Moderator
April 17th 2011


15976 Comments


I've never been able to get into these guys. Guess this won't help. Good review, of course.

Digging: Necropoli - I

eternium
April 17th 2011


16338 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Probably heavily depends on how much post-rock you listen to. If you listen to a ton of it then you'll be so sick of the cliches that you won't enjoy this. That's my hypothesis.

Romulus
April 17th 2011


8436 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0

agreed on basically this entire thing. band has been so eh post-the earth is not... i probably should not have bothered with this

Maniac!
April 17th 2011


26250 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

hurr you made a summary funny

Deviant.
Staff Reviewer
April 17th 2011


31168 Comments


And that summary finally sees the light of day

Digging: LV and Joshua Idehen - Islands

Burn2Burn
April 17th 2011


2378 Comments


album rules.

SeaAnemone
April 17th 2011


20310 Comments


worked harder on the summary than the whole review, dev

and willie: I highly doubt you'd like this if you didn't like their other stuff (which is pretty accessible, but some people just don't like it), don't waste your time por favor

SowingSeason
Staff Reviewer
April 17th 2011


15994 Comments


i always thought their stuff was great but not amazing

Digging: Sharon Van Etten - Are We There

SeaAnemone
April 17th 2011


20310 Comments


I agree Sowing, with a few single-track exceptions

though they are admittedly amazing at being like the perfect gateway band into better post-rock... them and Sigur Ros. Actually I think Spokes would be better than both but nobody cares about Spokes so...

Romulus
April 17th 2011


8436 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0

sigur ros has this endearing quality to them though that makes them all warm and fuzzy

explosions in the sky does not



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