Review Summary: I awoke to sirens, but all you heard was apologies.
There seems to be some sort of unwritten rule that an emo band is not allowed to have a long prosperous career, or at the very least, bands that identify themselves as “emo” cannot release more than three albums. There are countless examples of bands crawling out of the wood work, releasing one or two critically acclaimed albums before disappearing nearly as quickly as they came about. One such example is the life of On The Might Of Princes, an emotional post-hardcore band out of Long Island, New York, who assembled a dedicated fanbase through passionately personal music around the turn of the century. With their sudden disbanding in 2004 after their first European tour, fans were left with but three albums, the final being 2003’s Sirens
The album itself starts off with an instrumental track that flows perfectly into the second track, all while perfectly setting the foreboding and angsty mood for the album to follow. A track that finds itself dripping with passion and anger, the appropriately titled “Go *** Yrself” establishes the tone present on the remaining ten tracks, as the song starts and stops, ebbs and flows, until an explosive outro finishes off a truly banner track. On The Might Of Princes are at their best when their songs are allotted the proper amount of time and energy to fully progress and to “breathe”. When songs are allowed to be fully fleshed out, there are few who can hold a flame to the music created by these young men. This maturity beyond their years, while discussing their song writing, is made evident at the end of tracks such as “Cloak and Dagger” or “Spit Survival”, the former employing a stunningly beautiful piano outro, as the rest of the chaotic instrumentation fades to nothing, creating a near transcendental atmosphere.
Emotion is prevalent throughout the entirety of the remainder of the record, an observation that in and of itself is not surprising. But married with the fact that the passion is ever present, is the revelation that On The Might Of Princes do not seem to know how to write a bad song. Intertwining dual guitars are offset by pulsing and driving drums, embellished by gut wrenching screams, gentle whispers and everything else in between on every track. Dull tracks cannot be found anywhere on the entirety of Sirens
, a testament to the songwriting capabilities of these Long Island natives. A power struggle between the melodic and chaotic aspect of the band is apparent, a struggle that only leads to more passionate and personal music, as the songs often find an abundance of both melody and chaos. This is palpable in my own personal favorite track, the aforementioned “Spit Survival”, a winding, pervasive, dissonant track, that takes listeners through the best of what On The Might Of Princes have to offer on their swan song.
is an appropriate final offering, a final offering that any currently defunct band would be proud to lay claim to. An entirely moody affair that leans more towards post-hardcore than emo, this record encapsulates the very essence of the early 00’s emo scene. Although On The Might Of Princes did not survive more than 5 years, Sirens
is a record that has already withstood the test of time to a certain extent, and will continue to do so for years to come.