Monarch (USA-CA)
Two Isles


3.7
great

Review

by insomniac15 STAFF
August 2nd, 2016 | 18 replies


Release Date: 2016 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Summer time bliss...

An emerging band, the San Diego natives, Monarch have landed a deal with Causa Sui’s label, El Paraiso Records. For a debut, this is quite a lucky strike as the Danish quartet operates at high levels of quality. Much like their label mates, these Americans have crafted a lovely album full of summery grooves. Perfect for those sunny days, Two Isles flows naturally, touching several heights within the psychedelic rock sphere. The SoCal area has always been a haven for the respective genre, so there’s a certain style developed there. There’s a nice blend of old and new here that fans will surely enjoy, as influences start from The Allman Brothers or Camel (among other classic acts) and continue to contemporary acts from the area such as Earthless, Golden Void or Astra.

Monarch don’t stray too far from their roots and deliver a short, lush record. ‘Assent’ and ‘Dancers of the Sun’ boast that lovely pastoral atmosphere, a perfect soundtrack for a walk through the forest or on the beach. The steady rhythms and dual guitar leads are taken right out of the ‘70s, plus the multi layered vocals only add to that pastiche. Meanwhile, ‘Hundreds, Thousands, Millions’ takes a more gentle approach with effects-soaked, picked chords on top of a deep bass line that accompanies really well the quiet yet driving drum patterns. The band occasionally breaks into short riffs, however, it’s clear they’re not the main focus here. Only ‘Sedna’s Fervor’ jumps in some powerful moments, before returning to established routes on the 10-minute epic, ‘Shady Maiden’ along with the title track. The former features a hypnotic hook, complete with multiple detours where the guitar takes off on extended solos while the rest keep the groove, whereas the latter mixes everything heard before into a sweet closer that is both engaging and blissful. Vocals are a highlight here, still everyone does a great job. There’s nothing revolutionary about Two Isles, but it’s a damn great and compelling record, thus assuring repeated spins. Fewer records today are as simple and welcoming as this one, so I’m happy to have stumbled upon it. Dig it!




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user ratings (32)
Chart.
3.6
great

Comments:Add a Comment 
insomniac15
Staff Reviewer
August 2nd 2016


4658 Comments

Album Rating: 3.7

Great album by a new band.



Listen to it here - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9F1vR0HEUnA

Conmaniac
Contributing Reviewer
August 2nd 2016


24241 Comments


looks interesting tbh. always looking for summertime jams

insomniac15
Staff Reviewer
August 2nd 2016


4658 Comments

Album Rating: 3.7

This is somewhere in between Golden Void, Causa Sui and Astra. Since it's only 33 minutes long, it makes for a really nice, easy listen.

Conmaniac
Contributing Reviewer
August 2nd 2016


24241 Comments


have no idea what those are so

insomniac15
Staff Reviewer
August 2nd 2016


4658 Comments

Album Rating: 3.7

Haha ok, if you want to give them a shot here are some links :D



Golden Void - 'Shady Grove' - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Zd-7rSHXKzA

Causa Sui - 'Mireille' - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m2sH5zKJK34

Astra - 'The Black Chord' - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=60K4rsmE3Ak

Conmaniac
Contributing Reviewer
August 2nd 2016


24241 Comments


hey thanks my friend

ChaoticVortex
August 2nd 2016


698 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Album cover is very Causa Sui-like. Sounds like a good summer jam, I will check it out.

insomniac15
Staff Reviewer
August 2nd 2016


4658 Comments

Album Rating: 3.7

All El Paraiso Records releases have a similar pattern, which is a cool thing IMO.

Voivod
Staff Reviewer
August 2nd 2016


8055 Comments


I like this album as well, nice to see it reviewed by you Raul.

Edit:
The album is streaming at Spotify.

iswimfast
August 3rd 2016


1463 Comments


Fix that first sentence I don't think you need that many commas and there's some tense confusion or something.

insomniac15
Staff Reviewer
August 3rd 2016


4658 Comments

Album Rating: 3.7

Thanks Voivod!



I wanted to fix it, but I can't. There's an error that appears every time I try.

ChaoticVortex
August 3rd 2016


698 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Charming and very relaxing beach blues rock with the right ammount of 70's psychedelica. Thanks for the recommendation Raul.

BenThatsMyJamin
August 7th 2016


2140 Comments


Great concise review, you really sold the album. Definitely fancy checking this and the other bands you mentioned out, summer jams are the best jams

jemaiseyeti
August 7th 2016


83 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

I love the album art of El Paraiso Records albums! Love Causa Sui, definitely will check this out. Nice review too!

insomniac15
Staff Reviewer
August 7th 2016


4658 Comments

Album Rating: 3.7

Thanks!



Although the album's nowhere near Gunther's new single 'No Pantalones' lol.

Thibs
October 4th 2016


2626 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

great licks on this thing

aliceinchainz94
March 1st 2017


2 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

This album is very chill. Highly recommend if you enjoy 70s psychedelic/ jam rock. Shady maiden is seriously knarly and has an epic 5 minute guitar solo.

MrSirLordGentleman
November 4th 2017


12053 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

guitar tone in here is just perfect



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