STELLARDRIVE - ERS-4: Speak, Memory

Stellardrive - ERS-4: Speak, Memory

7 songs
36:21 minutes
***** **
Le Sonotone

Bandpage

Once Mogwai and Godspeed You Black Emperor got the post rock wave started, an infinity of followers didn’t wait long to make life hard for your average music reviewer. It’s not easy to come up with something new when you play instrumental rock music, but some bands can at least leave a more than just favourable impression.

Take for instance Stellardrive, a quintet from Besanšon in Eastern France, quite close to Switzerland. After three EPs, they try their luck now with their first longplayer titled ERS-4: Speak, Memory. Once you’ve made it through the atmospheric intro Synesthesia, you’ll find yourself surprised at the alacrity of their regular sound. Burnt is a little under four minutes long and the band’s shortest track, but it’s clear from the start that the five musicians don’t lose themselves for too long in mellow guitar picking, instead getting quite soon to some deft guitar work which is harder than normally expected from your generic post rock band. The following, nearly eight minute long, Amuptaum shows Stellardrive from their best side, combining melodies and powerful guitar riffs into some kind of post rock with a definite emphasis on the “rock”. Things continue in that vein until the end, except for the one minute experimental track They Don’t Want Us To Remember, displaying a band well at ease in its chosen genre, unafraid to play it harder than the competition. If you can imagine liking a post rock band with the energy level of a post metal band, then you are at the right address with Stellardrive. They could only have added one more song to give their longplayer a more adequate running time.

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