Math Rock, Indie, Rock
Far, Mystery Machine, Jawbox
Survival Knife has a deep rooted 90's laced vibe. This vibe primarily stems from lead singer Justin Trosper, former frontman for the powerful hardcore noise rock band, Unwound. Unlike Unwound, however, Survival Knife provides more coherence and fine tuned craftsmanship. Their debut album, Loose Power consists of seven tracks running 38 minutes. If you can stick with the first two mediocre cuts a terrific album will unfold.
Starting with track 3 "Gold Widow" and ending with the epic "Heaven Has No Eyes". "Gold Widow" almost takes us to a whole other level where progressive rock with dulled subtle hints of math rock elements. The track contains some classic Failure riffs accompanied by some bold lyrics such as "California's getting old". Next up "Cut the Quick" a stellar 8 minute song which exudes some some crafty guitar work and an impressive song structure. Well worth your patience. This song really takes us back to some classic Mystery Machine (pick this obscure 90's band up if you have not heard them).
Track 5, "Roman Fever" is probably our favorite track off the album (or a close tie with "Heaven Has No Eyes"). The first few seconds kick in reminiscent of the math rock gods Jesus Lizard. Great hooks and mixed-up tempos on this one. What really caps things off for us is the breakdown into a classic Neil Peart possessed drum interlude. If you take any of our advice give the last two minutes of this track a gander. The title track, continues the positive momentum with some high energy and infectious off tune melodies. The last track, "Heaven Has No Eyes," the other 8 minute plus tune provides a whirlwind of different change-ups building into a Mars Volta like frenzy... just tremendous. All this maintained with a core vibrant melody that is not lost and tied altogether at the very end.
We never sugar coat here at Rotation11. The first two tracks will not 'wow' you, but we encourage you to be patient as what ensues is quite the treat. Had the first two cuts had some more flavor, this very well could have been an editors pick. We look forward to tracking Survival Knife's touring endeavors on our 'On the Road Page' in the near future. - 8/14/2014
Standout Tracks: Heaven Has No Eyes, Roman Fever