Vola Album Review: “Inmazes”

Chris Palmer
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Chris Palmer

Head of Album Reviews [Voluntary] at Metal Gods TV
I lead the team of reviewers and write reviews on a voluntary basis.
Chris Palmer
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VOLA
“INMAZES”
Album Review By Rachel Tooley

4/10

The new album from VOLA is a very unique, experimental release that breaks all the rules within the music industry. After the release of two of their own EP’s, three years of hard work finally paid off when VOLA released the ‘Inmazes’ album digitally during 2015. Singer/guitarist Asger Mygind claims to see a development in the bands work from the 2011 release, Monsters. Mygind also said that they elaborated on the experimental techniques used for Monster in their new album, because it was such a success the first time. One band member short after the resignation of guitarist/singer Niels Dreijier, the group still managed to produce a very powerful album that will steal the attention of anyone who comes across it…

When I began to listen to this album, I personally wasn’t attracted to the sounds that I seemed to be hearing. I wasn’t too sure if my speakers had broken. However, I let it be, expanded my mind and let the tracks continue playing. The first track ‘The Same War’ is a very heavy, overpowering collection of noise. To be honest, I didn’t personally feel a flow, the instruments seemed disconnected and it left me feeling quite confused and disorientated. Track 2 ‘Stray The Skies’ had a good intro. The music was much more dramatic yet consistent – something my brain could comprehend a little easier. In this track you can really pick out the experimental techniques used with the guitar; It really sends a vibration through your bones. ‘Starburn’ had quite an eerie beginning and a great build up, however, as the track continued, I began to get reminded of the unpleasant experience from when you’re stuck in the corner of a massive crowd at a gig right next to the bellowing speakers… Vibrating, heavy, blurred noises are all I could really hear. The fourth track on the album had a slightly more sombre, mysterious attitude, until the sudden burst of energy wakes you up and brings you back into the present. As it moves further through the track, once again I’m feeling a little confused… are they playing the right notes? As the vocals come in, I can hear a slight improvement, yet I’m not sure this would be one to add into my playlist. By track 5 I’m starting to get a headache. However, the track slowly improves as the vocals are introduced; the singer displays a great variation of tone and speed to keep your ears hooked. I was elated as track 6 ‘Emily’ began to play; a HUGE improvement over what I had been hearing in the first half of the album. This track was quite unusual and kept with the band’s very experimental style, but it was still quite relaxing; the atmosphere of the track is quite dreamy, it reminded me of indie band ‘The 1975’, who curated a very ‘head in the clouds’ track consisting of a similar style. ‘Gutter Moon’ had a much better mix of instruments, the contrast of piano and heavy guitar worked unusually well. It has a modern twist about this tune, and the slower vocals can really portray a more emotional side to the album. ‘A Stare Without Eyes’ is yet another improvement on the first half of the album, the composition is clearer, the beat is recognizable and everything fits together. The vocals also progressively sound clearer throughout this track – this could even show us a deeper meaning like an improving state of mind or freedom (wow, am I back in GCSE English?). Track 9 ‘Feed The Creatures’ was another pleasant surprise. The loud start awakens you from that dreamy state and revs up your brain, yet the slow vocals soothe your soul and give you a calmer peace of mind. I really like this track as it has a lot of variation within it, with different bursts of power hitting you at any moment. This rollercoaster of energy really leaves you feeling invigorated and satisfied. The final track ‘Inmazes’ is a good way to end a very interesting album. The second half was a certain improvement for me. ‘Inmazes’ is an easy listen and sums up the rest of the album quite well – it’s hard to pinpoint a particular atmosphere for this track; it seems to be quite a trippy, unusual composition as everything seems in slow motion (the lyrics and vocals are heavy but quite fogged and echoey).

Overall, I can’t say that this is one of the best albums I’ve listened to, and I wouldn’t particularly jump at the chance of playing it again. However, I applaud the group on taking such an unusual, experimental approach to music, something that not enough artists have the guts to do these days. I can truly say I’ve not listened to an album like this before, and for that I credit them.

TRACKLIST

The Same War
Stray The Skies
Starburn
Owls
Your Mind Is A Helpless Dreamer
Emily
Gutter Moon
A Stare Without Eyes
Feed The Creatures
Inmazes

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