Posted by: will | July 28, 2006

The North Atlantic…


The North Atlantic “Wires In The Walls” (WPO)

Buy it at Insound!

Unfortunately, the little sticker tattoed on the cover of Wires In The Walls got The North Atlantic off to a bad start for me. You just don’t toss around statements like “A staggering blend of Archers Of Loaf, Hot Snakes and The Dismemberment Plan” willy nilly. That’s some tough shit to live up to for any band. And while The North Atlantic fails to measure up to those impossible comparisons, the band acquits themselves rather splendidly. Wires In the Walls was originally released in 2003 on a small San Diego label. The band went on hiatus but got back together and signed to WPO Records in early 2006. It was decided that the band would re-release Wires In The Walls before any new material and it’s for the best as the album certainly deserves wider recongition.

One thing that is completely humorous is The North Atlantic’s similarity to a band like Bear Vs. Shark. If you didn’t know any better you would think one band totally stole from the other. Both bands have the uncanny ability to go from raging rockers to more atmospheric songs to catchy pop-influenced tunes. “The Lotus Eater” starts things off with a bang and it barely lets up until “Scientist Girl”, the fifth track and obvious single. The song brings to mind Weezer of all bands. It’s definitely a catchy song but does not represent the band’s overall sound very well. Although the lyrics of I’d rather listen to my Clash records all night then be with you is a brilliant line. “Bottom Of This Town” is a fantastic change of pace. It’s a beautiful downtempo song that is built around an incredible ambience. The plus 7 minute “Atmosphere Vs. The Dogs Of Dawn” really shows The North Atlantic’s breathtaking range as the song veers all over the band’s vast repertoire. “Cities”, with it’s swirling soundscape, dancing tambourine and “interesting” lyrics, sounds oddly enough like The Doors. The lyrics of The street wears holes in shoes and god wears holes in people certainly leaves a lasting impression. “Swallow Air” is probably the most reminiscent of the great Archers Of Loaf. The dynamics of the song are beautifully orchestrated.

It’s assumed that The North Atlantic will be releasing an album with new material sometime next year. That will mean it will have been four years in between the band recording. That bodes for a remarkably different album than Wires In The Walls probably. Will the band deliver on their obvious potential? Will people care enough to follow along? Guess we will just have to wait and see. For now, Wires In The Walls will do the trick.

RIYL: Bear Vs. Shark, Fugazi, Archers Of Loaf

Listen: The North Atlantic – Scientist Girl (mp3)


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