Tuesday, December 13, 2016

Tears Run Rings - In Surges

The winter months bring an increased density.  The clouds overhead are thicker, darker and appear weightier.  The moisture from the sky often is solid.  Even the seasonal food tends to be more substantial.  And for some psychological reason, my taste in music shifts to crave more sonic density, as well.  With perfect timing, West Coast band Tears Run Rings have delivered just what the season demands:  In Surges, a ten-song shoegaze and dreampop album of remarkable quality and consistency.  The arrangements are lush, full, and wide scope.  But the magic here is the band's infusion of delicacy and sweetness.

The album opens with the moody, staticy, mid-tempo "Happiness 6".  In the following "Belly Up" Tears Run Rings spread their melodic shoegaze wings with soaring melodies and layered vocals.  The band's dreampop craftsmanship is showcased on "Things Have Changed", which is likely to be a favorite among most listeners.  "Parts of Glass" is jangling, moody haze dissolving to sunshine.  "Green Lakes" presents ethereal tension and a sense of mystery.  Dreampop and shoegaze meld into a perfect hazy bliss with angelic vocals on "Broken".  "Destroyer" shimmers and sparkles, leading to the rocking, Ride-like shoegaze of "Something You Can't Hide".  The album relaxes into jangling dreampop with "Sine Wave Sleep", and then ends with a "Happiness 7" -- a sweeping soundscape.  Varied, detailed and beautifully executed, In Surges may be the shoegaze LP of the year.  Sample below, and stream the entire album at the Bandacmp link.

Tears Run Rings are Dwayne Palasek (drums), Ed Mazzucco (guitar), Laura Watling (vocals/bass), and Matthew Bice (vocals/guitar).  The four members reside variously in Portland, San Francisco, and Los Angeles, which results in the members writing and sending their contributions via the internet to other members.  From time to time, they converge and record, but as In Surges was under construction for six years, you'll have plenty of time to digest it before you hear a follow up.  The band's past recordings include two LPs (most recently, the well received Distance) and one EP.

In Surges is out now on vinyl and digital formats via North Carolina's Deep Space Recordings.

Bandcamp page for digital album
Order page for vinyl
Deep Space Recordings

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