Maybeshewill - Critical Distance

Instrumental music hasn’t been as creative and in as good health for several years.

There has been a veritable plethora of instrumental bands from these shores (and close by) within the past few years. Mogwai have released a new record, And So I Watch You From Afar have taken the mantle of ‘great new hopes’, 65daysofstatic have continued to be the best goddamn band in the world whilst taking an entirely new direction, and Adebisi Shank released a truly phenomenal second album. Instrumental music hasn’t been as creative and in as good health for several years. Maybeshewill have been unlucky in that respect, unduly being overlooked - perhaps the initial tag of ‘post rock’ a poisoned chalice, as other bands desperately strove to move away from that sound. Perhaps a not-subtle-enough allusion to left wing politics on tracks such as ‘This Time Last Year’ or the monologue from title track ‘Sing The Word Hope In Four-Part Harmony’ at a time when the British public inexplicably favoured the Conversatives. But I digress.

‘Critical Distance’ is the first taster of new album ‘I Was Here For A Moment, Then I Was Gone’. It sees the band refine their sound, much in the way I Like Trains did with their last record. The ‘wall of noise’ aspect of previous work has been replaced with a much greater clarity between the instruments, a crispness which benefits the song. The piano that opens the song is slowly accompanied by drums (programmed and ‘live’) building and building before exploding into life around the 90 second mark. ‘Critical Distance’ has an air of grandiosity and accessibility to it - if this had Jared Leto singing over it, it would be No1 in 23 countries by now. That is meant as a compliment, honest. The piano solo two thirds of the way through lulls you into thinking the song has reached it’s end before BAM, back with the explosion of sound. It’s a very well crafted song that shows the songwriting skills of Maybeshewill have improved, to create something that sounds far more immediate that still rewards repeated listening.

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