Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Caves of Steel - Troposphere/Magnetosphere (2012)

For ages, indie rock was a tiny, tiny speck on my ship's radar; the approaching "enemy" certainly a threat, but not one to be taken seriously. I'm typically not a huge fan of the style, mostly because I don't know where to start exploring, but these Norwegians have pushed my interest in the music to the forefront. Previous rummaging through the genre left me with an all time favorite, The Koxx, but Caves of Steel seem to have one-upped those guys in terms of instrumental skill and by mishmashing different influences from the collective rock palette. Their second EP, Troposphere/Magnetosphere, fuses both post- and indie rock to form a style I'm not too well-versed with, but find fascinating and addictive enough to keep spinning over and over.

At first listen, Caves of Steel's penchant for post-rock is quite clear, and from the first track you feel like you're floating atop an airwave, light, feathery, and lost in another world. "Last Citizen of the USSR" and "Lisa Nowak Love Story" give off a nice, oceanic post-rock vibe and offer a sharp contrast to the of the record, while the following three are where the band starts to dip into indie rock territory, creating almost danceable grooving with "Gemini XII" and a metallic riff structure with "Honey Trap."

Much to my dismay, Troposphere/Magnetosphere is only available digitally courtesy of Bandcamp --luckily any format of your choice--but I keep wishing I had a physical copy, to take a gander at the song writing credits and gaze at the wonderful cover art. This EP is a perfect contender for a vinyl release beacuse 1) it's so damn good and 2) an analog format would enable the music to come alive in warmth and feeling. The current mastering job is a bit too clinical for my tastes, although only minimally so.

Sadly, Troposphere/Magnetosphere comes to a close after a short five tracks of musical bliss and exploration. For this music lover, the flood gates have opened to explore yet another type of style, which can be an all too daunting task, although the band's EP will keep me satisfied for weeks on end. For the time being, I'll be crossing my fingers for a physical release, particularly vinyl.

-TMA

3 comments:

  1. Nice review, i saw them warming up for Scott Kelly some months back, totally amazing! I had'nt heard of them before even thought i live in Oslo, shame on me.. Anyway, they have realeased it on vinyl! (I have no idea if it's sold out thought..) http://doognad.bigcartel.com/product/troposphere-magnetosphere

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  2. Thanks for the comment! I actually already own it on vinyl and love it!

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    1. Caves of Steel have just released a NEW album: http://music.cavesofsteel.no/

      I (the bass player) and the rest of the band would be honored if you would take a listen. We think this record is at least as good as T/M, not yet on vinyl though..

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