Saturday, June 21, 2008

Album: Serena Joy - Ours Will Be A Lonely Battle EP

Band: Serena Joy
Album: Ours Will Be A Lonely Battle EP
Label: We Heart Records
Year: 2007

01.Movement I
02.Movement II
03.Movement III
04.Movement IV

Something has been brewing in the Serena Joy camp for a while. Covertly stealing members from several defunct underground bands, including andtheywillriot! and Missiles of Uncertain Destinations, they've now burst back onto the scene as a formidable seven-piece band, incorporating a range of new instruments including a violin, keys and even a mini-accordion brought out especially for the live show. What's more, their new EP, holding the appropriately gallant title “Ours Will Be A Lonely Battle”, may well turn out to be the most brazenly epic thing you have ever heard!

Split into four tracks or “movements” this 20-minute cinematic composition voyages through dynamic late-90s screamo territory, taking in sprawling sections of weaving instrumentation and post-rock ambience. Narrated by a mixture of raw screaming vocals, harmonious female singing, snatches of background chatter and poignant laments, it draws to a memorable finale with an extended spoken-word passage residing behind driving instrumentation that gradually gathers intensity; an unwavering stream of consciousness, falling over itself to get the words out, and ultimately climaxing with a coming together of voices in the rousing sing-along:

"Victory is silent, but I hoped it would provide more answers than this. Darkness has fallen, into the light..."

Understated, it is not. But although victory appears to ring hollow for the protagonists at the heart of the record’s concept, for the band itself this is far from the truth. Overblown, but splendidly so; Ours Will Be A Lonely Battle indulges in many of the great aspects of music, raging war on tired and bloated genres by ripping them apart and pillaging the best bits - much as sadly defunct Scottish five-piece The Fall Of Boss Koala did so well. And, before you say it, yes - I am fully aware of the romanticised nature of some of the statements contained in this review, but when faced with an affair of such magnitude, just you try describing it without getting a little carried away! - In It For The Money Zine


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