Bands like Crash Of Rhinos don’t come around often. Five excellent musicians – long-time friends from well respected former bands – treading a well-worn path (melodic, intricate, emotional indie rock with heartfelt vocals) but creating something unique and consistently alarming without any sense of pretentiousness or bigheadedness.
My first encounter with CoR was at my own bands second show in 2009 – since then I’ve had the pleasure of sharing a stage with them on countless occasions, being constantly blown away time and time again.
As a result, “Knots” comes weighed with expectation and excitement. Once a band with a strong DIY fanbase, they now find themselves open to a wider audience on a larger worldwide scale. “Knots” is CoR operating on a grander scale than anyone could have imagined – the group vocals are now tighter and powerful, while the focus on choruses is better than ever – best displayed on album highlights “Interiors” and “Impasses”.
They still find themselves spiraling into tightly-locked intertwining melodies and rhythms that linger on the air and boggle the mind – previous album highlights “Stiltwalker” and “Gold On Red” have new bedfellows in “Luck Has A Name” and “Speeds Of Ocean Greyhounds”, where the songs feel like they’re locked in ever-evolving loops that build to giant climaxes.
While “Knots” feels like a more mature and expansive record to its predecessor, it never lacks that same urgency and emotional grab that “Distal” possessed (if anything, the urgency is amplified by stronger lyrics, stronger voices and stronger musicianship).
Crash Of Rhinos – 2 guitars, 2 basses, 1 drumkit, 5 voices and 2 Grade A perfect albums.
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