HALOED EYES – Shadows (2009)

Haloed Eyes - Shadows Shortly after hearing Centaur Rodeo’s debut, Tongues of Flame, I decided that I needed to hear more from Sordo Music, a Creative Commons-centered internet music label. Sadly, however, the year seemed to drift away from me, and it wasn’t until now that I procured Shadows, the newest release from the label.

Shadows (composed by Haloed Eyes, which consists solely of guitarist/vocalist Burton Wagner) is a single, 41-minute post-rock composition – and I say “post-rock” in the truest sense of the word. The prime focus of the guitar work in Shadows is not power chords or riffs, it’s textures and timbres (and how these textures/timbres augment each other). As the song progresses, it calls to mind various artists (Mono, Lichens, Isis, Mogwai, among others), so there’s certainly not a lack of diversity on the record. The composition itself is pretty good (it gets a bit stagnant at times, but at 41 minutes, it was bound to), but the biggest flaw the record has is its production. The entire album sounds tinny and thin, and with a composition that relies so much on texture, tinny and thin is a very bad combination to have. Shadows should be full of colors and contrast, but instead, it’s rendered in a murky monochrome.

This album, were it to be re-recorded with some depth to it, could easily be great, but as it stands now, it’s only sub-par. I’m not sure if I can recommend it, but I’m not sure I can’t, either. It’s a musical crapshoot for me. For you, it could be something else entirely.

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