Maybeshewill – Sing The Word Hope In Four Part Harmony Maybeshewill – Sing The Word Hope In Four Part Harmony

Maybeshewill - Sing The Word Hope In Four-Part Harmony

Maybeshewill - Sing The Word Hope In Four-Part Harmony

You’ve got to feel a bit bad for Maybeshewill. They’ve been having a stab at this post-rock thing since 2005, and in even less time four young upstarts from Northern Ireland have no sooner supported them on tour than rise above them in the instrumental stakes. Maybeshewill seem to have remained in stasis while their peers have risen up around and surpassed them – And So I Watch You From Afar, Crippled Black Phoenix, hell, even Mogwai- Have all managed to release pretty outstanding albums and remain relevant….yet Maybeshewill have stayed where they are. Why? A first listen of Sing the Word Hope in Four-Part Harmony would not lead you to any negative conclusions: Beefy guitar riffs are combined with precise drumming and create, at times, genuinely emotional music. How to Have Sex With a Ghost shows the band at their strongest – furious metal riffing and intricate guitar parts are fused to powerful effect. Similiarly on This Time Last Year, the band manage to knowingly juxtapose ballsy metal guitar lines with delayed lead parts that genuinely sound as if they’re in despair. It deliberately comes across as obtuse and arrogant, but upon further listen there’s more than meets the eye. This is sealed with a classic, sampleofoldpeopletalkingontv. It wouldn’t be a Maybeshewill song without one, after all.


This is all great…..except. Anyone who has listened to Maybeshewill before this album know that they can do this already. They could have wrapped this album up before tea-time, so strong is their trademark sound. But in a genre like post-rock, sticking firmly and rather stubbornly to your guns isn’t the way to go. For an instrumental band you’re disadvantaged from the start; you’re down a player. Frustratingly, they haven’t even completely stuck to their previous sound. The more rough and ready guitar riffs seem to have been given a somewhat Coldplay sheen, and instead of the raw distorted guitar lines, we now have the suspiciously recognizable sound of Meat Loaf-style piano parts. Flecks of the old sound still remain; On Last Time This Year for instance, which features some serious guitar droning that you really wouldn’t want on at a dinner party. Another problem with this album is the overall tone. Because, if you didn’t know there was a recession going on before or why, you sure as hell will after a listen to this album. Although an instrumental band, Maybeshewill still like to utilize sampling – usually from film or television. Almost every excerpt featured on this album points to greed, money, and doom. It can at times anger, almost as if they want us to protest angrily- but as long as this album’s on in the background. In as much as all the punk movement of the 70’s could say was “Fuck You”, this album seems to wallow in 21st century despair somewhat. Again, we’ve seen it before (See: The band’s previous album, Not For Want of Trying, and it’s Howard Beale moment).

This isn’t a bad album, Maybeshewill will still remain a household name in Post-rock circles. The album has moments of heart bursting inspiration, and flickers of humble pensiveness. As an old criticism of Post-rock goes, however, life is not always full of heart wrenching, 100mph moments. Sometimes you have to go to work or pay the bills or watch Flight of The Concords. Maybeshewill it seems, instead of progressing their sound and accounting for these moments which make up significant portions of our lives, have focused on the negative, and whilst praise has to be given for the band releasing and recording this themselves, it should have been a lot better. Who knows though, the band could progress their sound exponentially, and release a third album of serious grit and thoughtfulness. Maybeshewill…….but probably not.

Maybeshewill - Sing The Word Hope In Four Part Harmony, reviewed by Lemon on 2009-05-05T06:00:18-07:00 rating 3.2 out of 5

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