Time Columns- Mana (2012)

Posted: June 8, 2012 by Is This Revolutionary? in Album, Reviews
Tags: , ,

The phrase “you guys are great…for a two-piece band” is like hearing “You’d be the best boyfriend…if you’d lose some weight.” There’s something that stings in that honesty: you’d be perfect if it wasn’t for just one little thing. Well, folks, Time Columns is here  to prove that size isn’t everything with their newest release, Mana. This two-piece, hailing from Maryland, is like a child Hercules, packing a serious punch in a bite-sized morsel. From beginning to end, Mana is 2 years of hard work paying off.

Utilizing their trusty Gibson Echoplex, Time Columns explodes past their Sunriseinthesea EP in terms of creativity and just sheer talent. The first song goes heavier than almost their entire last album combined, and it’s beautifully complemented by airy notes in that Beware of Safety sort of way. Not straying too far away from their roots, tracks such as Lights at Rendlesham feature their trademark uptempo, screaming guitar and fun, melodic play-style. However, there are a few big changes from late-2009 to now; they prove they can play both insanely fast and calm and peaceful. Also, they use vocals in an very interesting manner throughout the course of Mana. Lole’s Song uses them as just plain instruments, meanwhile Luma, my favorite track on this album by far, features a very Animal Collective-like vocal scheme that I fell in love with from the first play-through to the 20th (yes, twenty). Capping off with what sounds like a banjo moment at a backyard shindig, the sounds of crickets chirping, crackling fire and miscellaneous voices, Mana ends on a note that transmits loud and clear: even though this album gets serious, have fun with it. Life’s a party.

I never thought I’d see the day where I’d give a band back-to-back 5/5’s, but this is surely deserving of it. Ask me a year ago, I would have placed my money on Cicada, but Time Columns has crossed the finish line first. The first one blew my mind in its creativity, and this last one is its more mature older brother, impressing me with its ability to go from chaotic and calm and back, all the while never losing the sound that made this band great. My only regret is that I had not gotten to this sooner. Follow this band now, they WILL take off.



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