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Album Review

With Somnambulists, There Were Wires continues its precision telescoping of post-hardcore, breaking the album's midportion material into two- and three-minute furies of frenzied screams, frantic, wiry guitars, and percussion that doesn't so much hammer out a rhythm as it pounds a beat into brutal submission. "Walking" is a slight departure, wavering deliberately between slower, Slint-like arcs of guitar and angular drop-offs that keep suggesting a tempo change. Instead, the instrumental sets up the bullheaded "Get Cryptic," which itself charges through a surging, lurching staging area before finally finding its bullied and bruised hinging moment. It's not really necessary to understand TWW's tortured vocals — as they fight to be heard over the deafening instrumental din or deconstructed (i.e., slowed down) metal riffs, it seems their purpose might not be to inform, but unify the alchemic stylistics at work. "Black Magic Rabbit" is two minutes of churning bass punctuated by bright, brittle flashes of tensile guitar, while opener "New Doom" expertly plays There Were Wires' introspective and screaming invective sides off of one another. With the ten-minute "Gasp" removed, Somnambulists is only about 20 minutes long. But it still feels like an album, since There Were Wires is so adept at tension shift and explosive, temple-punching dynamics. Yes, your head is ringing at the end.


Genre: Rock

Years Active:

Boston-area rockers There Were Wires presented a harsh blend of melodic vocals and vicious guitar on their self-titled debut record. Putting together their own record while first coming together in Martha's Vineyard, the band released an eponymous debut on their own label to promote their efforts. Soon after, enthusiasts from Iodine Recordings heard the album and offered to distribute it with five bonus...
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Somnambulists, There Were Wires
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