The World Is A Beautiful Place & I Am No Longer Afraid To Die

Harmlessness

Written by: LF on 15/01/2016 23:43:33

While 2014 brought us an experimental spoken word EP that strayed somewhat from the previous style of emo band The World Is A Beautiful Place, 2015 was the year they released their follow-up record to the critically acclaimed debut "Whenever, If Ever" from 2013. In many ways, "Harmlessness" continues where they left off back then, with post-rock-inspired build-ups and atmospheric emotional songs, but their sound is much fuller this time around.

The album starts out calmly with just guitar and vocals on "You Can't Live There Forever" but it quickly builds up to encompass the full 9-member band sound including violin, keyboard and extra both male and female vocals. After a short interlude, they continue from here with great determination in a couple of forward-striving, rhythmic and dynamic songs, "January 10th, 2014" about the goddess Diana being the absolute highlight. The album is heavily loaded up front with a great selection of songs however, and so the following upbeat song, "The Word Lisa", deserves a mention as well, standing out not least with its bright, screeching guitars towards the end that interplay with the somewhat iconic ending sentences of "When we get home we won't be empty / We found a purpose in each other / Break the mirror, we get younger / Life will always be weird".

The band's lyricism in general balances between huge sentences about life and death and dealing with both, and non-caring, apathetic ones that catch your ear with their oddness, like "Our bones are brittle from eating garbage and sitting down" or "How great that someone's doing what many of us should have done" that come off as sharply satirical through the disengaged singing. A kind of dualism is also evident in the music itself, sometimes even internally in one song like "Ra Patera Dance", that starts out energetically but quickly settles down into a lazy tempo with the repeating of "I kept myself in the dark" before it kicks off in a louder second half with guitars, keyboard and violin that all play noodling patterns that interlock playfully.

From here, though, the album loses momentum and the only song that stands out later is the 7-minutes long "I Can Be Afraid of Anything" that rekindles some of the earlier energy. It's not that the other songs don't have a couple of dynamic shifts in them as well, but they are generally calmer and slower songs and fail to make an impression that's anywhere near as strong as the otherwise mentioned songs. The soundscapes they build are generally attractive but the latter half of the record simply lacks variation and memorable melodies that can measure up to the stand-out songs it otherwise delivers.

7

Download: January 10th, 2014 ; The Word Lisa ; I Can Be Afraid of Anything
For The Fans Of: empire! empire! (i was a lonely estate), American Football, The Appleseed Cast, Into It. Over It.
Listen: facebook.com/twiabp

Release date 25.09.2015
Epitaph/Broken World Media

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