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The Violence Beneath

Mouth of the Architect

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Album Review

In both title and content, 2010's The Violence Beneath EP reflects the inner turmoil afflicting post-metal ensemble Mouth of the Architect over the two years following the release of their third album, Quietly. In a nutshell, the Dayton, OH-based group parted company with guitarist Steve Vernon for the second time in four years, so they wisely decided against rushing their next long-player during a period of transition, opting instead to release this four-tracker comprised of two new songs, one live recording, and a rather surprising cover. Taking them one at a time, the opening title track plays it safe and vicious with a relatively uniform sludge metal assault, while the then-minute-plus meditation, "Buried Hopes," tackles a wider range of sonic and emotional moods, in keeping with the band's ambitiously atmospheric earlier work. So, too, the uncharacteristically brief and heretofore unreleased live offering "Restore," which summarizes MotA's compositional arsenal rather neatly before giving way to a wholesale deconstruction and subsequent trance-metal reconstruction of Peter Gabriel's "In Your Eyes," which is entertaining, to say the least, and haunting beyond belief. All told, this foursome combine into a well-rounded and timely stop-gap so that Mouth of the Architect can collect their thoughts and draft their next move, leaving supporters hopeful that this latest piece of turmoil, like the others, will be overcome and inspire even more imaginatively schizophrenic metalgaze music.


Formed: Dayton, OH

Genre: Rock

Years Active: '00s

At the time of their first effort, 2004's Time & Withering, Dayton, OH's Mouth of the Architect featured Jason Watkins (vocals, keyboards, samples), Gregory Lahm (guitar, vocals), Dave Mann (drums), Alex Vernon (guitar, vocals), and Derik Sommer (bass), and followed in the footsteps of Neurosis, Isis, and Godspeed You! Black Emperor in exploring heavy metal's more progressive, trance-inducing reaches. But this lineup splintered shortly thereafter, and Mouth of the Architect almost fell apart...
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The Violence Beneath, Mouth of the Architect
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