Manchester Orchestra

The Million Masks Of God

Written by: PP on 02/09/2021 19:56:34

Manchester Orchestra has come a long way since their emotionally charged 2006 debut album "I'm Like A Virgin Losing A Child". While the evolution has been gradual, it was nonetheless radical enough to notice on "A Black Mile To The Surface" where they began expanding their soundscape big time. That approach continues on their sixth album "The Million Masks Of God", a lofty, far-reaching record that can only be described as epic in sound.

Given the artistic maturity of tracks like "Keel Timing" and "Angel Of Death", the group now draws parallels to the likes of Muse in grandeur. Vocalist Andy Hull's soothing, yet powerful style is a perfect fit to the ambitious, dramatic soundscapes that seem designed to echo on arena-sized (if not larger) gigs to create that encompassing atmosphere that only the very biggest bands can achieve. At the same time, the more balladic material like "Annie" or "Telepath" demonstrates that he's able to stand capably on his own also without strong guitar backing.

Most other bands who elect a route this ambitious end up with an overpolished, unnecessarily inflated expression that feels big for no particular reason, and therefore falls flat. Here, Manchester Orchestra takes great care to stay grounded enough to leave behind a believable expression. It's soothing and laid-back, despite reaching out towards the stratosphere. It's poppy, but indie rock enough to avoid a turn-off for the more alternative rock-oriented of us (read: this guy). But that being said, it's the kind of record that sounds good and feels good, yet you struggle to name the songs a couple of days later. Continuing on the Muse references from earlier, that's not something you'd be able to say about, well, pretty much any of their records, for instance. So even though "Dinosaur" and "Inaudible" are among the highlights of Manchester Orchestra's recent albums, the record as a whole is not quite as consistent.

7

Download: Inaudible, Keel Timing, Angel Of Death, Dinosaur
For the fans of: Band Of Horses, Muse, Silversun Pickups, Coldplay
Listen: Facebook

Release date 30.04.2021
Loma Vista

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