Animals As Leaders
The Joy of Motion


4.7
superb

Review

by Thompson D. Gerhart STAFF
March 18th, 2014 | 995 replies | 97,217 views


Release Date: 03/25/2014 | Tracklist

Review Summary: A modern freerunning landscape complete with scenic vistas, complex obstacles, and luxurious rest stops that ensure you’ll frequent the course

A busy album in every sense of the term from start to finish, The Joy of Motion will require your full attention while occupying your ears. The non-stop fretboard freerunning of Javier Reyes and Tosin Abasi weave a mental parkour course polished and perfectly framed by the densely layered yet intricately crisp production of Misha Mansoor, skipping through and hopping over genres like mastered obstacles. Much like their debut, however, there’s plenty of room for a breath of fresh air after setting a new record on the course, and even among the furiously technical solos of dizzying tracks like “Mind = Spun,” there is space dedicated to peeling back the shred-heavy jetsetting futuristic landscape in favor of a prairie of drawn out chords and open air.

Sonically, Abasi and company kick things off with a nostalgic, Bulb-produced acoustic intro, before stoking the cerebral fires with the flighty bass pattern and tender yet technical drumming of “Air Chrysalis,” the danceable flamenco/jazz hybrid of “Another Year,” the undeniably catchy funk of “Physical Education,” and so much more. On the darker side, crunchy grooves and polyrhythms galore are also well-executed all the way from the traditional AAL riffage of “Ka$cade” to the dark and sharp BTBAM-esque direction found on “Nephele.” But the melodic and unexpected moments of glee undeniably stand out, making it easy to get lost in the open-air blues interlude of “Nephele” and forget its metal-plated core, though it’s the combination of both that make it, and the album as a whole, such a fascinating and enjoyable listen.

But that’s also part of what makes The Joy of Motion a deep, satisfying, and replayable album: you won’t get everything out of it on the first listen. The studio work of Mansoor (production) and fellow Periphery bandmate "Nolly" Getgood (mixing) allots for a room jam-packed with sounds that are somehow opulently clear while the band pour in layers and layers of details. Like scanning a high definition image for details, more and more will appear to you in time, and every revelation is a welcome addition to the listening experience.

The Joy of Motion is a modern freerunning landscape complete with scenic vistas, complex obstacles, and luxurious rest stops that ensure you’ll frequent the course, learn more and more as you do, and never feel out of place or uncomfortable along the ride. While others try to force-feed their listeners mashed riffs or stewed solos, Abasi’s trio succeed here for their ability to let it all come together as a balanced and organic experience anyone from diehard fan to casual listener can enjoy. And by providing such a natural, accessible track that’s also challenging and rewarding, The Joy of Motion succeeds as a powerful and lasting musical venture that solidifies Animals as Leaders as not only musical trailblazers, but consistent frontrunners.



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user ratings (735)
Chart.
4
excellent
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Comments:Add a Comment 
AtomicWaste
Staff Reviewer
March 18th 2014



1991 Comments

Album Rating: 4.7

Gotta love it.

"Physical Education" is probably the best song on here, but I love "Another Year" too.

CalculatingInfinity
March 18th 2014



1593 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Damn, I need to listen to this.

Insurrection
Contributing Reviewer
March 18th 2014



21006 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

listening now. so good

Digging: Interpol - El Pintor

OwMySnauze
March 18th 2014



989 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Can't wait to get the vinyl in the mail. Sounds like this is going to redeem them from the Weightless letdown.

Digging: The Contortionist - Language

DeathGrinder
March 18th 2014



152 Comments


Hyperbole much?

AtomicWaste
Staff Reviewer
March 18th 2014



1991 Comments

Album Rating: 4.7

I really didn't care for Weightless, so yeah, this is definitely a helluva redeemer.

climactic
March 18th 2014



18854 Comments


nice review

ive hated the shit that mansoor has produced recently but this is top notch shit, might even be better than the AAL debut

SnakeDelilah
March 18th 2014



7047 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

So fucking pumped.

Digging: Texas Is the Reason - Do You Know Who You Are?

Scoot
March 18th 2014



17748 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5 | Sound Off

this is as good as the s/t and considerably better than weightless

made a ringtone out of the catchy lick in physical education

RivalSkoomaDealer
March 18th 2014



765 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

I love this. Do you guys think this is better than s/t? If so, why? I'm just curious because I personally can't decide.

Digging: SBTRKT - Wonder Where We Land

Thor
March 18th 2014



10191 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

thank you based tosin

fromtheinside
March 18th 2014



18177 Comments


good read but i can't stand these guys

Digging: Tragedy - Vengeance

adr
March 18th 2014



2440 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

dat rating damn

Digging: Nihilist - Nihilist 1987-1989

BigPleb
March 18th 2014



36431 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Needs to leak in 320 hard.

Digging: Arc Iris - Arc Iris

echoent
March 18th 2014



5 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Already seems better than Weightless.
Where are you guys finding the entire album?

BigPleb
March 18th 2014



36431 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Needs to leak in 320 hard.

DeathGrinder
March 18th 2014



152 Comments


I've got a 256 kbps rip. There's barely any audible difference anyway.

ASnideReturns
March 18th 2014



4144 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

I need to check this out.

Digging: Coldplay - Ghost Stories

climactic
March 18th 2014



18854 Comments


yea 256 v 320 is p much not noticeable unless you have an audiophile set-up

Pankar95
March 18th 2014



139 Comments


So... its good? I didnt expect that.



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