Intensity and passion are two integral parts of music that can be very hard to convey in a recording. Live it can be a lot easier, for instance, you can just jump up and down a lot and rock your crotch towards the sun and/or moon, and then the people will go "wooooo." To obtain this reaction from the people from a CD alone is pretty hard, but thankfully Emergency Numbers is able to do this quite efficiently. I blame the bountiful dynamics and fierce straight forward hardcore parts. But even when Majority Rule is being straight forward, there is a lot going on.
The juxtaposition of such abrasive/fast/hard parts spliced with such long played out instrumental breakdowns is really like none other. Although it can be compared to Oceanic by Isis, Majority Rule brings it without having a metal sound. It's hard to understand how they can have such a full sound whilst containing only three people, but I'm sure the effect pedals aid in this department. Frankly, most people will not be able to make it past the intense vocals to find the gem beneath. Where as one of the "singers" sounds like big bird shot in the stomach, with higher shrill sounds imitating gurgled blood and spouted final words, the other sounds like an angry giant swinging his club. Sharing the drummer from the recently deceased City of Caterpillar is a definitive plus; his ability to add little elements here and there during build ups is awesome. The way that he does it enables them to make their breakdowns stretched out without getting boring. Creeping bass notes that slowly crawl up your thigh and echoing guitar vibrations that salivate into your eardrums will keep your attention span well lit. The tone on the bass is really nice, it sounds buzzy and distorted, but recorded where you can still hear the individual notes distinctly.
The last song, "Boeing", for the first half is pretty boring and is definitely the low light of this album. At about 2:00 all that is slows down and transform into their usual slowed down instrumental breakdown with the occasional yelling of words here and there. But it's after the clearing of this part that the most beautiful and triumphant guitar part occurs; too bad it lasts for so short. If you just can't get past the vocals, and would still like to listen to the music, the song "Are Forever" is your cure. The use of an instrumental track breaks up the tension of the angry vocals and provides a blanket for retirement under the haze of radio feedback and delayed guitars. The biggest surprise is the short spurt of sung words in "American Feature", which commands, "Everyone. Sit down./The movie is starting./Everyone. Sit down./It's called 'Never Ask Why'". While the lyrics don't break down any new barriers, they definitely aren't cliche, and read to obscure and specific too sound contrived.
There are a few things that could've improved this release from great to excellent, mainly more music and more of a growth from the previous full length. The better recording was noticeable and appreciated, a definite improvement. It'll be interesting to see where they go from here, hopefully not as small as the difference between Interviews With David Frost and this. AND PLEASE MORE MUSIC NEXT MAJORITY RULE!
8.4 / 10
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