The Receiving End of Sirens
The Earth Sings Mi Fa Mi


4.5
superb

Review

by Adam Knott EMERITUS
December 6th, 2011 | 137 replies | 14,416 views


Release Date: 2007 | Tracklist

Review Summary: A swirl of torment and, hidden somewhere, beauty.

Only one word is capable of latching itself onto The Earth Sings Mi Fa Mi: exhausting. It's exhausting to listen to, exhausting to write about, exhausting to think about; it's like a black hole from which nothing can escape, least of all light. With all that said, it's painfully catchy, but painfully is the right word; you can almost feel its hooks pummeling you, each one familiar but not quite recurring. Such is the claustrophobic nature of The Receiving End Of Sirens' second LP: it exists in the same vortex as Radiohead's Kid A, somehow impossible to break apart and completely in denial of the outside world.

Even when the band adopt a softer approach than their default swirling rock/post-hardcore, like the choral section at the end of "A Realization Of The Ear", the voices surround you, intent on locking you in a moment of beauty rather than letting it flow anywhere. Elsewhere, the cages are built from twisting, screeching guitar lines, abrasive electronics, and overwhelming vocal harmonies, all of which is produced in such a way as to submerge you underneath, throwing your arms at the tales of tragedy and loss and pain that Brendan Brown labours over.

The floodgates, though, are shut for a reason, and that reason is "The Pale Blue Dot", the album's closing track, harbouring one of those moments you just have to hear again. In isolation, it's innocuous, but under the weight of everything that's come before, when the dam breaks, it releases all the pent-up emotions of the last eleven tracks in one exhilarating rush. This is how to build an album, one which relies on every iota of itself to achieve that final climax. The Earth Sings Mi Fa Mi is a difficult record, there can be no doubt, but its brilliance is ultimately so rewarding. It's a record which writhes in discomfort from start to finish, letting its pain conduct epic and suffocating waves of sound until it finally all collapses in on itself, and you wonder how on earth you got so far from home.



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Comments:Add a Comment 
Knott-
Emeritus
December 7th 2011



10195 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5 | Sound Off

Love, love, love this album.

Knott-
Emeritus
December 7th 2011



10195 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5 | Sound Off

I like Synapse but I totally disagree. I could never get my teeth into it, whereas this just drags me under every time I start listening to it.

Jom
Staff Reviewer
December 7th 2011



2658 Comments


I remember really liking 5, 7, and 9, but "The Crop and the Pest" is ridiculously awesome.

Knott-
Emeritus
December 7th 2011



10195 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5 | Sound Off

Yeah I think "Stay Small" (9) is my favourite track except for the closer, Jom. And 4, slightly, behind that.

Knott-
Emeritus
December 7th 2011



10195 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5 | Sound Off

Which tracks are Casey's vocals on? Because I couldn't decipher who was who, and he's the only vocalist I named in the review.

Xenophanes
Emeritus
December 7th 2011



10592 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Duuuuuuuuuuuuude been digging the hell out of this the last week what a coincidence. : D

Xenophanes
Emeritus
December 7th 2011



10592 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

6-the end is one hell of a stretch of songs.

Knott-
Emeritus
December 7th 2011



10195 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5 | Sound Off

the start-the end is one hell of a stretch of songs

this album makes me realise i give 4.5s out too easily :]

tkxxx7
December 7th 2011



6153 Comments


only album by them i haven't listened to.

TMobotron
Contributing Reviewer
December 7th 2011



7067 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Smoke and Mirrors was my jam when I was 17

Knott-
Emeritus
December 7th 2011



10195 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5 | Sound Off

WELL. "That's not what Wikipedia said!" claimed the awful researcher.

Knott-
Emeritus
December 7th 2011



10195 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5 | Sound Off

Honestly, because there are plenty of parts here that sound like him and that could easily be his
lyricism too. Plus, I don't think it's necessary to know the extra-curricular stuff to love a record.
It just definitely helps when you're writing about it. I just never thought to double-check.

Knott-
Emeritus
December 7th 2011



10195 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5 | Sound Off

It would be fair to say I have no idea what Casey Crescenzo looks like so even if I'd watched the Smoke and Mirrors video it probably wouldn't have helped! Obviously I love TDH, I 5'd The Color Spectrum, if that's what you were telling me to check out :]

Gyromania
December 7th 2011



15461 Comments


I mean, it's cool and all but...

Omaha
Staff Reviewer
December 7th 2011



10043 Comments


I really didn't like their debut... so I guess I wouldn't like this either most likely.

tkxxx7
December 7th 2011



6153 Comments


Casey was annoying in this band anyway

LegendofPittman
December 7th 2011



2943 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

I liked the first album more, but this one is still pretty good.

theacademy
Staff Reviewer
December 7th 2011



28391 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0 | Sound Off

great album

Digging: Kimbra - The Golden Echo

theacademy
Staff Reviewer
December 7th 2011



28391 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0 | Sound Off

is this review a re-post? I could have sworn I read a review of this fromyou in the past, dude

forshoredividesusger
December 7th 2011



34 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Both this and Synapse are like one of my favorite albums ever. Still, i think Synapse is a tad bit better than this. Hope these guys are writing new stuff with Casey now with the reunion going on.



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