Reviews ...And You Will Know Us by the Trail of Dead Tao Of The Dead

...And You Will Know Us by the Trail of Dead

Tao Of The Dead

…And You Will Know Us by the Trail of Dead are at their best when they are at their biggest, and Tao of the Dead is a big album. Don’t be fooled by the track list when you see a majority of the songs clocking in at two minutes. This album is massive. Like a dinosaur running through your house or an epic space ship battle.

Track one is a good place to start with this album, believe it or not. It is a self-proclaimed introduction with the title “Introduction: Let’s Experiment,” and it even sounds like a proper introduction; nothing fancy or obscure. Trail of Dead does not set you off on the wrong foot. The intro fades out, and without much hesitation or filler, track two satisfyingly kicks in; a good head-nodder that sounds ripped from Source Tags & Codes (not a bad thing).

By the time “Cover the Days Like a Tidal Wave” came on, I had to turn my headphones down before my head burst open, which surely would have yielded candy and fairy dust if music could actually leave tangible things behind. This album is wonderful.

Much of what I enjoy so much about this band is their balance. It’s baffling that a group can simultaneously sound old and new, historical and science fictional, medieval and fantastical space operatic. But they pull it off almost too seamlessly. “Weight of the Sun” could very easily be both the soundtrack of Patrick Stewart’s character as Captain Ahab as he hunts the leviathan that stole his leg in that weird USA Network special on Moby-DickOR Patrick Stewart’s character as Captain Picard as he murmurs “engage” in the heat of a deadly chase from ugly big-headed bad guys from another planet.

There is something unassuming about …And You Will Know Us by the Trail of Dead, yet they continue to compel me with momentous music on every release. It’s strangely appropriate for the era this band belongs to. In an environment of post-this, something-cores, and other general uncertainties and in-betweens, anytime something beautiful and important crawls out of the mess, it is an occasion to be celebrated. I am very grateful for quite a bit that Trail of Dead has produced. The entirety of Tao of the Dead is now part of that collection that I can stash away and look back fondly upon when music moves on to wherever else it is going.

8.7 / 10Travis
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Superball

2011

8.7 / 10

8.7 / 10

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