A horrible hack

Old Gray

Everything I Let Go & The Things I Refuse To

Year Released: 2013
Format: LP
Label: Dog Knights
Reviewed by Rob Mair on Dec 4, 2013
Having released one of the albums of the year in ‘An Autobiography’, this timely press for 2012’s ‘Everything I Let Go & The Things I Refuse To’ gives UK fans the chance to play catch-up in getting on board with one of the most exciting bands to emerge over the last 12 months.

The first thing that struck me about this EP (which originally predates ‘An Autobiography’ by about six months) is the confidence displayed by the Connecticut three-piece. There are no growing pains or scratchy beginnings here, and although it isn’t as fully realised as ‘An Autobiography’, it’s clear from the outset what this emo/screamo three-piece is striving for.

Musically it is never crushingly heavy or excessively fast, rather delicate and light, yet the vocals (and all three members step up to the mic) really push the limit, whether it’s the spoken word of ‘359 Pine’ or the emotionally-charged screams on ‘Winter 11’. Raw, intense and spiteful, it’s the perfect combination and sits surprisingly well with the, at times, haunting music.

The juxtaposition works particularly well on ‘Resonance’, the outstanding cut on this four-track. The music, which has more than a nod to the post-rock stylings of Explosions in the Sky, builds gradually, while the vocals get more raw and expressive. It’s a trick as old as time itself, but it rarely sounds as honest or genuine as this.

Also, a quick note about the overall package; ‘Everything I Let Go & The Things I Refuse To’ is a real work of beauty. Dog Knights have had a stellar year, and with releases as lovingly crafted as this, it’s easy to see why.

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