The Monroe Transfer- Trials (2010)

Posted: March 28, 2011 by Is This Revolutionary? in Album, Reviews
Tags: ,

I constantly have to start over with this band. When I start to write about this album, I begin really strong and accurate, but then something in the music changes, and it completely disproves what I’m trying to say, so I’ll stop trying to relate it to something and just describe it to the best of my ability.

The Monroe Transfer is a 7-piece band from London, England (jeez, it’s been the British Invasion here at ITR?) who draw a lot of influence from Godspeed You! Black Emperor, but not in the way you’d expect. The sound has a lot of very similar elements, including the minimalist, droning guitar solos using delay petals and the energetic violin/viola, but the feel is so much different. Whereas GY!BE, at least to me, gives this very distant feel that’s beautiful, but never gives me the chance to emotionally connect, The Monroe Transfer is a much friendlier version.

To be perfectly honest, the reason why it’s hard to describe The Monroe Transfer is because you can’t really pin them down into a clear genre. They are most definitely post-rock, but where to place them on that spectrum is where everything falls short. They combine a who bunch of different elements into one, so if you aren’t a fan of one particular part of the album, be aware that it will certainly change. For those of us who love the album in it’s entirety, it’s something different. Every song brings something new to the table. One song, or maybe even one part of a song, will make you feel so angry, so upset, but then they totally channel that feeling into something else, generally something forceful and epic.

Rating: A lot of music coming from the post-rock genre can just be left on as background noise, but Trials demands your utmost attention as it spins its tails. You stop listening, you’re lost. Not that that’s such a horrible thing in itself, but if you want to really experience this album in full, it’s like watching a movie: you need to get every last detail to grasp the depth of the elements they use. It’s such a beautiful ride, it really is, and if you’re done with just standard song-to-song post-rock, and you really want to try something new, take a listen to Trials and treat yourself to a show. 4/5 kegs.

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The Monroe Transfer has asked of our readers to take a brief questionnaire to help them work out how to release this new album. Even if you hated this album or didn’t even give it a listen, please just take this, like 2 minute survey just to give them some input. They’re really nice, sincere, humble people, solely doing this for the love of the music, so please fill out the questions as a personal favor to me. Cheers. (If you haven’t already, click here)

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