Sunday, April 17, 2011

Irons & Pulling Teeth - 2011 Grey Savior (Split)

Band : Irons & Pulling Teeth
Album : Grey Savior (Split)
Release Year : 2011
Genre : Ambient | Post-Rock | Hardcore | Experimental

Tracklist :
1. Irons- Letting Go
2. Irons- Light Bringer's End
3. Irons- All Life Needs Death
4. Irons- Sky Funeral
5. Pulling Teeth- Generals Of Dark Hymns
6. Pulling Teeth- Dismissed In Time (Remix by J. Bannon)

Irons is a supergroup composed of Converge vocalist Jacob Bannon, Integrity vocalist Dwid Hellion, and artist Stephen Kasner. While first impressions might indicate some sort of metal/hardcore machine, Irons is actually a post-rock band that explores a much more different realm then most of its members are more typically used to. That being said, for their split that they put together with hardcore band Pulling Teeth, Grey Savior, Irons offers four brand new tracks of ambience to the listener and to summarize it, it’s not too shabby. Those unfamiliar with Irons will probably be expected some sort of sonic explosion all throughout the tracks, yet on every single song that Irons has composed it remains heavily sedated and calm all throughout. Providing nearly twenty minutes of relaxing and calm tunes to the senses, it’s quite a surprising change of pace to those more accustomed to the brute impact of the member’s main projects. However, outside of the relaxing, almost shoegaze-esque, inspired tracks, there really isn’t anything that will capture the attention of the listener. Nothing really happens, sonic-wise, until third track "All Life Needs Death", featuring reverb-heavy, almost indecipherable vocals and even at that point it’s nothing to write home about. What you hear is what you’ll get, literally. The tone is dark and the mood is ominous.

Pulling Teeth
Pulling Teeth are a bit more well-known and recognizable in the scene. While not boasting any members from all-ready, well established bands (though not devoid of members from previous past bands), they have been carving a niche out of the hardcore genre since the mid 00’s. On Grey Savior, Pulling Teeth have offered two tracks, the first being the all new "Generals of Dark Hymns", the second being a J.Bannon remixed version of "Dismissed in Time", which was also the final track from Pulling Teeth’s sophomore album, Martyr Immortal. Keeping in step with the somber atmosphere that Irons had left on the listener, Pulling Teeth are also heavily toned down all throughout their songs. However, this does not mean that they too start to experiment fully into the ambient sector. "Generals of Dark Hymns", while not exactly sounding like ‘classic’ Pulling Teeth, is a much more sonically heavy song, carrying dark and heavy guitar riffs and a remarkable performance by the exacerbated vocals of Mike. It also shows off a bit of the clean vocals of Pulling Teeth that is also a welcome addition. The remixed ‘Dismissed in Time’ finishes off the Grey Savior just as sedated as it was when it first started; clocking in at exactly eight minutes in length, the J.Bannon touch that has gone into the song has made the track much more eerie and brooding than before.

When all is said, a good way to describe this release is mellow. While nothing really picks up or becomes interesting at nearly any point of Grey Savior, it is still a refreshing and relaxing listen that can be used for the more chill moments of one’s life. Even Pulling Teeth seem more restrained and reigned in throughout the sixteen minutes they have dedicated to the split, which is a good sign for such an eccentric band showing willingness to play around and experiment with their sound. Iron’s does the job they set out to accomplish, yet fails to create anything memorable, as their tracks just seem to slip by the listeners ears like water through an open hand. A good release packed full of acceptable, on-par ambience for a sweet, sedated evening.

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