Aways Away - Some Things We'll Never Know
- Artist: Aways Away
- Album: Some Things We'll Never Know
- Label: Unsigned
- Year of Release: 2011
- ME Rating:
- Reviewed by: mark_morton on 2012-02-16
For New York's Aways Away, genre is a mere side-effect, or consequence, of the band's own creative energy. Melodically tempting and angst-ridden to the core, Aways Away offers up a brand of music that is at once post-New Wave, indie punk, and Brit-rock-tabulous. It is as though David Bowie, The Cure, and The Clash were tossed into a blender, and the resulting frothy Brundle-fly recorded an album.
Remember when U2 was a youthful band full of hunger and cared more about writing good songs than turning Samaritan-isms into media events? SOME THINGS WE'LL NEVER KNOW offers up a similar vibe.
Aways Away's charm is in its innocent sentimentality, for while the songs border on romantic naivety, the subtext therein churns the yearning section of our memories, making us wish we can turn the clock back to have one more chance with a love that got away.
Simultaneously, Aways Away is a band I could easily find myself rocking out to in a Lower East Side club, performing alongside The Bravery or Your Vegas. The music is energetic yet morose, ambient yet frenzied, and pensive yet rollicking. It is one of those few bands where, at a live show, one has an equal chance of hooking up or getting fit-shaced and enjoying every second of the experience.
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on 2012-03-22 nebbia Said:
It may be due to the ease with which any fool can record and post music online, but the underground scene (at least as far as nj/ny goes) seems largely uninspired to me nowadays. Band after band, I'm set to be disappointed by overly generic 4-song EPs, which, for all their effort, give me as much excitement as a 14 year-old covering "smoke on the water" on youtube.
Still, in the midst of this cloud of musical toxicity, I came across a breath of fresh air. I found Aways Away and their debut album "Some Things We'll Never Know" a while ago, and bought it because it was only five bucks. As I put it on, I was initially puzzled by it. In a few minutes though, I was actively taken by it, and by the end of the 11 songs, I was already anxious for new material.
The record is great, a fresh, energetic cut filled with versatilty, inventiveness, and great feel. The best word to describe the album, in almost every aspect of it, is surprising. Throughout its lengths, it keeps jumping up at you with something new, changing direction continuously, and showing off a style I wouldn't have thought to put on an album. As the band starts it off with the title track, a lively post punk rant on government control with bright guitars and a driving bass, they pave the way for the rest album. They are loyal disciples of the New York sound, enjoy lush instrumentation, and like to be relatively versatile.This, however, could not make them any less unpredictable. Soon enough, you'll be constantly surprised by the bands creative energy and skill. They have the ability to combine and do things I didn't think could really sound well together, but which they pull off quite nicely. As you listen to the album, you will hear an all-too common indie melancholic feel, but mixed with driving riffs, shredding solos, and a solid back-beat (Some things, Pages, Nothing Left). Other common elements are bright acoustic guitars and quiet percussion (Tribal, Cold Tonight, Half Gold (unplugged), which acutely contrast the rest of the album's harder nature. Alongside these elements though, a bit unusual for an indie record, the band also includes pieces with a more alternative appeal, ("Kite Lock", "Word on the Street", "Listerine").
The biggest surprise and defining element of this entire album though is not the music or the instrumental work, but the singer's voice. It is one of the most unconventional voices I've heard, deprived of pop appeal and conventional style, which can even seem puzzling and unfamiliar. However, right when you thinkt that the singer will go offkey, or that his voice will not suit the songs, he pulls off notes well beyond expectation, and adds a unique touch to what he sings, doing both quite comfortably. Much like and more than everything else on the record, the vocals are the greatest example of the album's versatile and surprising nature.
On a critical note, I find that band can at times contradict themselves and get into more predictable patterns.They draw influence from bands such as the velvet underground, the pixies, jesus and the mary chain, the strokes, and U2. Elements inspired by these band sare one of the driving factors of the album, and are evenly spread throughout the record. Still, their influence is sometimes too noticeable, and puts too much emphasis on their style rather than aways away's, which considering the group's creativity, is unnecessary. But this isn't too much of a problem, as the variation within and between the songs help to create a distinctive mood each time anyway. They are a young band, this being their debut release, and will have plenty of time to develop and refine themselves. Plus, as someone who listen almost exclusively to pixies, velvet underground, pink floyd and mozart (...), I often expect too much from new bands, so that may be my shortcoming.
Despite this, "Some Things We'll Never Know" is a great record, one of the best I've come along in quite a while, well worth the listen, and an exciting prelude to future releases by the band. It is a solid interpretation of the New York sound, offering great compositions, unique performance, and much more. It has the amazing ability to wander in so many directions while keeping its overall feel. Each track leads into the next one quite nicely, the differing moods offsetting each other perfectly. Every piece is solidly rooted in the album's atmosphere, yet represents one of the many facets of the band's creative energy, which is presented in a familiar way everytime, but continuously refreshes itself with each piece, and escapes a specific genre. They're post-punk. no, they're indie. No, they're classic rock... No, They're simply Aways Away.
on 2012-02-22 nebbia Said: