Tides of Man

Young And Courageous

Written by: CEM on 14/08/2014 14:35:23

Tides of Man is an American progressive rock band formed in Tampa, Florida in 2008. Signing to Rise Records in March of 2009, they have provided a total of three full length albums to date, their newest instalment being “Young And Courageous”. Being their first instrumental album, distributed from the fourth February this year, it has already received both appraisal and various synonyms for disappointment from pithy reviewers. Tides of Man have trekked the United States back and forth with bands like Dance Gavin Dance, Emarosa, A Skylit Drive, Of Mice and Men, Oh Sleeper, From First To Last, We Came As Romans, and Asking Alexandria. After their current Southeast U.S. tour the plan is to come to Europe and share their passion for music with us folks from across the pond. Something I am particularly excited for, as you should be as well. Here's why:

The album sounds as what I would imagine a civilized debate of guitars would. The sassy twang of the string converses deeply with the echo of the leads' melodic phrases. Never coming to a standstill, the call and response leads us through an instrumental narrative in which we are the observer. A serenade of arpeggios and drones churn in a meta-cognition, reflecting repetitiously into space unexplored by previous works by the band. The acoustic range seems to span mountain tops, giving the listener an experience of euphoric omnipotence within the mix. The transition at the end of “Eyes Like Strange Sins” is by far my favourite. A clear indication that professional studios are vastly more resilient to the bedroom studio epidemic that seems to be sweeping across the indie music industry. As Tides of Man explain in their Indiegogo campaign video, the artists are out to evoke emotion. For the listener to shed a tear is a little much to ask for but it did stir various thoughts of mortality. This of course led me to ponder the mortality of their “sounds”. But seeing as this album was highly anticipated since they have written but 3 albums so far, I fear that it will have to wait humbly to truly be appreciated.

To be completely honest I haven't listened to much instrumental music since my years of Steve Vai and Joe Satriani, just doesn't get handed to me very often. I do find Animals as Leaders a prime example of the existing market, but is there really a place for Tides of Man without their former vocalist Tilian Pearson? It's one of those situations where the band has to make a conscious decision of whether or not to start from scratch or deal with the backlash of fans that don't like their new direction. To me this style of music is so much more tasteful, has exquisite depth and arouses the ears in other ways that the band was unable to do with a vocalist. They play with the cinematic ambience of Hollywood teenflick suspense and if given the chance could even be the next M83 in relation to overusage in climatic trailers. In “We Were Only Dreaming” the drums keep to their snare versus hi-hat routine, which does come off as HRVRD-y but is still very complacent with the guitars. Also, the introduction to "Young and Courageous" reminds me slightly slower version of the newer Circa Survive i.e. “Suitcase”. Hope that rounds off the typical “sounds like” junior reviewer aspect.

All in all, there's only so much one can say about this release. I've stated that there's fantastic production value to it, they’re fervent disciples of emotional upheaval and create mesmerizing melodies, what more could you want really? Well they don't have the attitude and force of bands like Frames or God is an Astronaut but they will still situate themselves highly somewhere in the disarray of post rock bands. If they continue down this path all they really have to worry about is the amount of time they can allow themselves in the studio. I say this because the pressure of presenting something tangible and purely musical is a daunting task and requires a lot of time, perseverance and courage. Definitely one of the better albums that has rung throughout my studio flat this year as the neighbours would probably agree as well. I hope the continuation of Tides' ideology will reveal itself on future work and perhaps by that time people will start to appreciate it as a separate piece of work from their prior albums.


Download: Desolate. Magnificent, Young And Courageous, Eyes Like Strange Sins, We Were Only Dreaming
For The Fans Of: HRVRD, Explosions in the Sky, Balmorhea, Mogwai, Frames
Listen: tidesofman.bandcamp.com

Release date 04.02.2014

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