One of the many, many joys of Shoegaze is the innate versatility and layered, meticulous precision artists possess, which in turn rewards the listener with songs that probably should instead be referred to as scores.
The soundtrack vibe only becomes stronger as bands continue to push the envelope. No Feeling Is Final (label?) is practically a case study (minus a few blemishes) on how best to perpetuate the genre. Maybeshewill has been doing this since 2008, and the newest offering, pleasingly enough, is as textured and unique as desired.
From the get go, ‘We’ve Arrived At The Burning Building’ masterfully balances beautiful violins and strings with a video-game-sounding track. Both parts of the song mesh to become an instant classic.
‘Zarah’ features an instantly recognizable ear-worm piano riff. My only gripe is it wasn’t twice as long, especially because the climate-change clip as a bed severely intensified the song overall. For those keeping score at home, any time a band uses a muffled, spoken clip, especially in Shoegaze/Post-Rock, my ears instantly perk up. More of this, please.
What sounds like an electric violin shrieks on ‘The Weight Of Light’ alongside soothing piano. ‘Refuturing’ ups the ante with a saxophone at the end (your move, Rivers Of Nihil). The versatility continues with a trumpet (‘Even Tide’) and short-lived yet admired chanting background vocals (‘Green Unpleasant Land’). As a side, much like clips in songs, chanting background vocals make my world go round.
But alas, not all of No Feeling hit every mark. ‘Complicity’ finishes strong, however lacks any real distinguishing qualities. It’s followed by ‘Invincible Summer’ which again takes a few minutes before elements seem to materialize. With 10 songs in total, chopping off one or two wouldn’t have diminished the overall result.
All in all, Maybeshewill’s full-length appears to be a tad front loaded – displaying the best pieces first and sort of fizzling off into background noise. Not meant to be unfairly critical, when the band fired on all cylinders, the finished product flourished.
Buy the album here: https://mybshwll.bandcamp.com/album/no-feeling-is-final