Thursday, June 11, 2009

Coalese - Ox

14 Mules For Sister Sara

I only listened to 0:12 Revolution in Just Listening by Coalesce shortly before their latest output Ox. Before I was part of the crowd who never really listened to the group but at least heard or even seen some form of Coalesce in the extreme music industry with Sean Ingram being a guest for bands such as The Ocean’s 2005 album Aeolian, The Used’s second outing, and being a defendant on The People’s Court; representing his merchandise company Blue Collar Distro. After getting my own digipak copy of the band’s newest full length, it’s easy to say that no matter if you listen to hardcore, metal, or even soundtrack music, you will love it and there will be no going back.

The journey begins where Coalesce’s musical capabilities go full force as everything is immediately at your face with clarity and brutality with the assaulting opener “The Plot Against My Love.” Sean Ingram screams are nothing short of a pure example of what could a mad man sing like with actual thought and aggression. Jes Steineger knows how to combine different riffs and sound like a raging with examples like the very metallic grooves to the technical harmonics and to even the Western soundtrack-like acoustic breaks; no riff on this record has any sign of filler present as there is always something exciting. Steineger’s bass counterpart Nathan Ellis plays along to the guitar game but with the sharp production it sounds great and hypnotizing as they fall into similar territory with the punch bass riffs hammering on constantly throughout the 12 or 14 songs.

The happily confusing sounds don’t go past the drums though as Nathan Richardson along with the Sean’s vocals are the most consistent. It’s math-y, plummeting, straight-forward, and also simply adaptable as it’s put to the test along with everyone with songs like “Dead is Dead” where it messages the albums overall lyrical and musical themes; filled with stories inspired by the American Old West followed by the constructing grooves of older rock bands and isolating tones of spaghetti-western films combined with the metalcore they have relied on since their inception. You and I can’t deny that the opposite combination is nothing short of excellence.

As I said I was not really a listener of Coalesce (even if I listened to 0:12) but Ox was my gateway into the band and will probably be for everyone else new into the field. There is nothing to go wrong with Ox, but with the tremendous hooks and actions played by every member, there’s everything to go right for long time fans and new listeners as I can simply sum up in one word: Powerful.


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