Album Review :
Metavari - Be One of Us and Hear No Noise

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Artist: Metavari
Album: Be One of Us and Hear No Noise
Label: Crossroads of America Records
Release Date: August 18, 2009
Review by: Eric Pettersson

Tracklisting:

  1. Kings Die Like Other Men
  2. Shimmer Marina
  3. Twilight over Akaishi
  4. The Priest, the Shore and the Wait
  5. Be One of Us and Hear No Noise
  6. Io, Apollo and the Veil
  7. Cerulean
  8. Maedchen
  9. Story for a Song without End
  10. Pacific Lights

As soon as I say Metavari plays instrumental post-rock, many will assume they sound just like the only other band they know in this genre: Explosions in the Sky. But this would be a false assumption. In fact, Metavari only comes close to sounding like Explosions on the closing track, “Pacific Lights.” Rather, they create a musical experience that is all their own.

While there are no lyrics, various clips of speech are used throughout “Kings Die like Other Men” to set an epic tone that shoots for the stars. Towards the end of the album, a slow acoustic guitar and ambient sounds accompany a little girl talking in French throughout “Story for a Song without End,” and this is the extent of the human voice on Be One of Us and Hear No Noise. Musically, songs like “Shimmer Marina” or “Cerulean” focus on an electro-pop element with a strong beat and fun melodies, while “Twilight over Akaishi” is just as electronic but in a much mellower way. “The Priest, the Shore and the Wait,” tones down the electronics to let the guitars lead the way (both acoustic and electric, as well as a piano). The build-up on this song is slow and intentional, leading to an inspiring ending. The title track works in some powerful and downright epic strings, immediately followed by the soft, bouncing electronics of “Io, Apollo and the Veil.” In other songs, such as “Maedchen,” the rock and electro-pop sides of the band are blended together to create something both engaging and comfortably unfamiliar.

Overall: Sailing out of Ft. Wayne, Indiana, Metavari delivers instrumental music that really connects with the listener. Far from self-absorbed and isolating, these sonic compositions draw you in and make you start writing your own story in which this record can be used as the soundtrack. The careful post-rock blend of electro-pop with straight-up indie-rock creates an atmosphere that is inspiring and unique without being forced, pretentious, or cliche.

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