Album review

At A Loss : A Falling Away From
Temple Recordings / Blackout!

At A Loss : A Falling Away FromWith plenty of explosive revelations, New Jersey's At A Loss clearly have their hearts in the right place. After a few listens you'll find that it's quite hard to box the Hoboken band into a specific genre, and debut A Falling Away From shows this to be the most successful element for the four-piece.
    While they are not a set-sound band, you definitely won't find thunderous storms of rock and roll, but rather an eclectic blend of melodic post-rock with twisting variations. A Falling Away From is a decent debut, but certainly doesn't come without a drawback. The drawback being the vocals; sliding out of key in a lot of places, and while it isn't cringe worthy, it certainly is enough to weaken the sound and make the music less effective.

Cut Before The Death Scene is the finest example in this portfolio of rock. With an explosive chorus, serene verses and the idea that this could very effortlessly be the song that Incubus didn't pen, it stands as a muscular opener. A Falling Away From continues with the hook infested In The Aftermath and the relaxed, uplifting tempo of Without A Name. Low Oceans and Black Window Space are instrumental tracks that miss the mark - nothing more than arty fillers that fail to impress. If At A Loss had replaced these two with similar material to the rest, it would have sat better with the album as a whole.
    While the sound varies throughout the length of the album, the vocals don't shift an inch to accommodate the different resonances, and we are unfortunately left with bland singing. But saying this, the change in sounds still remains a strong undertone to everything At A Loss do, and it's nice to hear a band that can modify their music effortlessly as soon as you snap your fingers.

A Falling Away From is a debut that may be worth checking out if you enjoy your post-rock, but don't expect At The Drive-In or Thursday. The best thing to do is sit back and open your mind, and appreciate the record for what it is, rather than think about what it could have been with a couple of things put right.

:: Graham Drummond

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