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Dorena - About Everything And More

joe vena   (35 reviews)

Posted: 09/15/2010 | Comments: 1 | Rate:

As a huge fan of post-rock, I can safely say I've dabbled in most, if not all styles and variations of the genre, ranging from the extremely sparse and minimalistic to the more traditional jazzy "Tortoise sound". Going into listening to Swedish band Dorena's sophomore release, "About Everything and More," I was expecting overtly ambient, nominally arranged music in the vein of Godspeed You! Black Emperor (which seems to be the model for post-rock nowadays). What I got, however, was a bit different. All the typical post-rock elements are noticeably there, with torpid song tempos and atmospheric, ambient arrangements, but there are numerous moments within the album that surprisingly break the mold of the post-rock "formula" and force the listener to snap back in and pay attention.

The most apparent difference between Dorena and most other post-rock that I've listened to is it's explicit resemblance to early Midwest indie rock. The opening track, "The Morning Bus," begins with a slow and lofty buildup into jangly guitar work that sounds like something off of a Joan of Arc record. Tracks such as "From the Window of My Room" and "We'll Never Meet This Young Again" continue this trend while also introducing a quicker tempo and skillfully mixing in poppy, upbeat synth lines that should seem out of place here but surprisingly don't. Dorena even manage to bring an element of heaviness and intensity that I haven't seen in many similar acts. The end of the third track, "At Sea", contains a fierce and fast syncopated ending that actually had me pseudo-headbanging. "In Silence" experiments and further removes the album from the standard formula with a short three minute and thirteen second duration of western-influenced guitar plucking floating through an airy backdrop. Vocals, like usual in modern post-rock, are almost nonexistent here, but the faint, dream-like croons compliment the music perfectly as they covertly weave their way in and out.

There are, of course, a few tracks, such as "Stars in the Ceiling," that don't do much to experiment and stick primarily to the rules and principles of Dorena's mantra that they've so masterfully broken in their other songs, but even these are well-written and very enjoyable. All in all, Dorena has put out a smooth flowing album of unorthodox post-rock stylings that succeed in breaking the mold that many of their peers so truthfully follow. Their synthpop and indie rock influences mesh with their ambient foundations to create a forward-thinking and fascinating collection of songs.

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vanilla gorilla
213,700 Posts
great first review man.

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