Sunday, 24 October 2010

Talons – Hollow Realm (Big Scary Monsters Records)

This is a record that you hear, and from the first to last note, you know you are listening to something truly special. Despite being instrumental throughout, this album conveys more emotion and contains more suspense than almost every album I have heard this year, or ever if I’m completely honest.

As each track progresses into the next there is no feeling of one track ending and another beginning; the album seems to be an entire piece of music and should only be listened to in this way. The emotion and suspense are created beautifully through balanced musicianship and a sense that every part has been thought through in length. There are moments of uncomfortable distortion which lead beautifully into almost brutal guitar riffs which in turn lead into contrasts with delicate, beautiful violin lines.

There are elements that remind me of the ambiance of Sigur Ros, these are paired with guitar and drum lines that would be at home on any metal album, and a general sense of drama and emotion. These comparisons are what make this album so fascinating to listen to. Talons seem to be a band who will take instrumental music to a whole new level with their very unique sound. This is the kind of album you can put on whilst walking and it will create a sense of tension and drama to even the most mundane of walks.

I know to the lack of vocals will put some people off, but you seriously will not notice that there are no vocals as the instrumentation creates far more drama and emotion than the majority of lyrics.

This is not so much an album but more of a symphony, it sounds like every single note has been carefully considered before the reaction on every other instrument is then considered. This is an album of complex beauty and wonder, I was blown away from the very first listen and with every subsequent listen I discover something I have previously missed. If this review was not enough to make you want to go and buy the record, or at least go and see Talons live, see the record as an investment, I can assure you that you will play it to death in your quest to find every standout moment on the album.

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