Twin Atlantic
Great Divide



by Kupasexy15 USER (14 Reviews)
September 7th, 2014 | 9 replies

Release Date: 08/19/2014 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Even as a watered down product, Great Divide still is a fiery, solid import

For Twin Atlantic, it’s the shadows no more! Trumpets blaring, gongs sounding and angels descending: That’s how the quartet from Glasgow, Scotland, chooses to reveal itself to the greater world on Great Divide. Not literally, of course, but the alternative rock outfit’s third album is one big, bombastic announcement party that hopes to spill onto the streets to continue the pandemonium in much larger, stadium-sized venues.

Surprisingly, however, Great Divide opens this fanfare with the tame piano-driven “The Ones That I love (Intro)” that laments the loss of the vigor of youth, insinuating an ambitious, mature affair to follow. It’s misleading, as the ensuing “Heart and Soul,” a mid-tempo rocker, attests. The album’s first single boasts windup verses punctuated with intermittent, choppy guitar chords before blossoming into a massive chorus with enough thrust to launch rockets into orbit.

Make no mistake: Great Divide is steeped with post hardcore-influenced, emo-tinged anthems that are aimed at the upper reaches of the atmosphere in the hopes that missing means hitting the dizzying heights at Wembley Stadium. Although always energetic and melodic, Twin Atlantic trades the songwriting subtlety of their earlier works for immediate accessibility. Thanks to the slick production, the guitar lines are tighter, the drumming less boisterous and the hooks easier to follow. Certainly, there’s nothing earth shattering here, despite the group’s enthusiastic, concussive attempts to shift a few of the planet’s tectonic plates.

Still, the Scots are enjoyable even without their signature “kilts” and “haggis,” so to speak. “Hold On,” with its faint background synths, is reminiscent of The Killers circa Sam’s Town. “Be a Kid” and “Rest in Pieces” are effective, if unoriginal, ballads, with the latter’s unexpected restraint and steady rhythms making it a standout.

They also still have the ‘ole Sam McTrusty drawl to differentiate the outfit from the myriad of the similarly styled acts. His rasp, though raw at times, is needed to deliver the bad-boy moxie to make tunes like the floor stomper “Cell Mate” a treat. McTrusty, like Twin Atlantic, are best when unruly and on the verge of coming unhinged with the band’s raucous instrumental inertia and sheer exuberance proving irresistible like on mosher “Fall into the Party” and the up-tempo “Actions That Echo.”

Predictably, there will be those who are put off by Twin Atlantic’s shift to reach the radio-friendly arena rock airwaves. Second single “Brothers and Sisters” is a cliché call to arms, and the acoustic “Oceans” and closer “Why Won’t We Change” are snoozers. The lyrical themes also can be a little grating with the emphasis on the trite teenage carpe diem, YOLO motifs: “Let’s drink, smoke and fornicate to a quicker casket cuz we’re young!”

Even so, the band stays relatively consistent and capable on Great Divide and in their greater discography. Though overall more tidy than usual, Twin Atlantic remains a loud, fun ruckus.

Recommended tracks:
"Fall into the Party"
"Cell Mate"
"Rest in Pieces"
"Actions That Echo"

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user ratings (44)

Comments:Add a Comment 
September 6th 2014


Agreed completely. Heart and Soul is a true jam.

Digging: Belle and Sebastian - How To Solve Our Human Problems Pt. 1

September 7th 2014


Good review, pos'd.

September 7th 2014


having a listen to some tracks on YT and this is bloody awful.

September 7th 2014


I hate Heart and Soul

October 23rd 2014


VERY good review, album not so much

October 26th 2014


Album Rating: 3.5

I love Oceans, but yeah, it's missing that little spark that their past work had in general.

December 14th 2014


Album Rating: 3.0

Agree with this review. I wanted to like this more but its very mediocre with a few exceptions.

Digging: Michael Hurley - Armchair Boogie

Staff Reviewer
May 27th 2015


Album Rating: 3.9

Building upon predecessor 'Free', 'Great Divide' is the 2nd LP proper from under-rated Scottish rockers Twin Atlantic. Slickly co-produced by heavy hitters Gil Norton & Jacknife Lee, this is the most confident that the quartet have ever sounded, as they alternate tempos seamlessly. Anthemic and energetic, the earnest vocals - not to mention distinctive accent - of Sam McTrusty lend these 12 tunes a priceless charming quality. For those who recall 'Vivarium', this will be derided for being too poppy & accessible, but it's also a whole bunch of rocking fun. Recommended Tracks: Heart and Soul, Fall Into the Party, Actions That Echo & Be a Kid.

June 1st 2015


Album Rating: 3.0

Yeah, it definitely is.

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