Posted by: will | June 28, 2007



Battles “Mirrored” (Warp)

Buy it at Insound!

Battles is a super group comprised of drummer John Stanier of Helmet and Tomahawk, guitarist/keyboardist Ian Williams of Don Caballero and Storm & Stress, guitarist David Konopka of Lynx, and avant garde/jazz musician Tyondai Braxton. But, if you thought you knew Battles, you might want to check again. Mirrored is Battles’ official debut full-length and it showcases a completely different musical animal. Instrumentally, Battles have always been masterful. However, on Mirrored, Battles have catapulted themselves well past being just instrumentally impressive. Mirrored sees the band moving in a wildly unique and imaginative direction.

There are two things that make Mirrored such an incredible listen that rises above the band’s earlier efforts. First, Battles’ instrumentals on Mirrored seem much more nimble and fluid compared to their past efforts. Mathy bands have a tendency to become stiff as the talented players have problems meshing. That never happens here. Battles players have the abilty to come together and bring their diverse skills and work off each other to amazing results. Second, Battles have added vocals and vocal effects to their songs. It is not just that vocals have been added, it is the way they are used. The vocals and vocal effects are yet another instrument that compliments the tremendous musicianship already shown. Those two elements combined together make Mirrored a mind-blowing listen. Experimental music should not come off as being this catchy and dare I say, dancy. Battles have done the unthinkable…they have made experimental instrumental music fun with just a few small tweaks.

This is what it takes to make ground-breaking albums…four amazingly talented musicians who see no boundaries to what they can create or deconstruct. Combining elements of art rock, prog, kraut rock, post-punk, electronica and math rock, Battles sit alone at the head of the class for experimental instrumental music. They have truly created their own sound on Mirrored. How many bands can ever say that?

RIYL: Don Caballero, Storm & Stress, Lynx


Battles – Leyendecker (mp3)

Battles – Race In (mp3)

Battles – Atlas (video)



  1. Hello

    Great book. I just want to say what a fantastic thing you are doing! Good luck!


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