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Alan Averill

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Third Island | ‘Omelas’


Third Island have really developed with this, in what seems like a single stride.

Their wispy doomgaze doesnt even need the artwork of smoggy, dusky cityscapes to communicate that same feeling, and ‘Omelas’ does well to bolster their already strong sense of what they’re about as a band.

As an opener, the title track isn’t that strong, with the out of tune, reaching for the note vocals that it must be said plague almost every song.

At least that’s the case until the heavy guitars come in and obliterate the slightly hesitant performance up to that point.

The guitars, and production generally, are a thing to savour on this.

All of the instruments have that cardboardy, mulchy tonality so hard to put your finger on (Organic, I think you could just call it) that was the calling card of Neurosis around ‘A Sun That Never Sets’. Thick, crunching, but with an airy middle.

Just hear ‘Visitors’ for an example of the weight they achieve.

The way Third Island make it their own is to have clean plucks and tinkles over the top of it, adding a Cure or goth-lite inspired melancholy to everything.

It’s strong. ‘Procession’ sums this up exactly with its washy Lycia or David Galas-esque dirge (again though the clean vocals just need top much work.), full and dark.

Even a harmony on those vocals would have sorted a lot of this out by masking the warbles.

Still though, as hard as they are to overlook, I’m willing to: because the music is so cool.

There’s a dystopian feeling in it all that doesn’t go as far as sci-fi but certainly speaks to the urban and the millennial. And all of that is without a synthesizer in sight. The fact that they’ve been able to make their music speak that is a good indicator of how well they’re doing creatively – and they’re definitely, definitely channelling something cool and something I want more of.

Earl Grey ::: 16/04/18

Third Island recently took out advertising with MI. This doesnt affect our editorial in any way. We tell you this. Other sites dont. You can trust MI.


3 Comments
  1. Enjoyed this. Somewhat fair criticism of the clean vocals as they do sound a slight bit out in places and could be stronger overall. Heavy vocals are spot on though and really pair well with that guitar tone. Digging the background vocal lines in tracks like The City, simple but really adds something.

  2. Cool stuff, it’s got girth

  3. Listened to this a fair bit now and it is a grower. I think the vocals are grand anyway and a definite improvement on the last one. They will be glad to know they are nowhere near the worst vocals reviewed this week anyway!

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