Maybeshewill - I Was Here For A Moment, Then I Was Gone
Release Date - May 30th, 2011
Record Label - Function Records
I Was Here For A Moment, Then I Was Gone feels like a movie: A cinematic sequence into the depths of your mind, locating images and patterns that connect to memories in ways that evoke utmost feelings of nostalgia. Is this not instrumental music’s forte? To enable the listener to paint their own stories and their own lyrics all summoned to the foreground by impeccably constructed instrumentation?
“Take This To Heart”, which follows a piano laden intro (“Opening”) gives you a solid foundation for what you can expect on the album. Buzzing guitars, a driving drum rhythm, solid bass lines, string sections and last but definitely not least; a piano melody that glues all the parts together with a sense of perfect cohesion. The scene is set for you to simply take it all in.
I Was Here… loves the piano and the strings; where as on past records, Maybeshewill used piano as an additional layer or melody over the main progression; there is a lot more emphasis on the instrument this time around. It soars along with the guitars in the heavier, more chaotic sequences; and ballads along beautifully in the more reserved, quieter sections. And the strings really add that extra cinematic feeling as well as an orchestrated vibe to the body of music. All this makes some of the climactic moments on the album feel like a true epic.
"Red Paper Lanterns" & "Critical Distance"; arguably the two strongest tracks on the album. They follow in succession giving you a dreamlike sequence of melodies and guitar layers. The simplicity of the main riffs soaring over the bulk of the instruments takes you on a soaring journey where as "Critical Distance" is straight forward number that emphasises a simple picked melody with a nifty drum beat before you are sling shot into a frenzy of layered sound. Maybeshewill’s chord progressions and musical transitions between sections play out like a dream.
There is more of the same until you reach “Words For Arabella”, a quiet and sombre piece dominated by horns and strings with a shuffling beat to keep it alive just enough without making you fall asleep… that’s not tp say it’s boring… it’s just that lovely and a welcome break to the more frenetic pace of the earlier tracks.
The closing track “To The Skies From A Hillside” deserves a special mention, for it is a perfect closer which embodies the entire album as well adding just that little bit more aggression. Heavy riffs, picked melodies, driving bass, punchy well timed beats, all counterbalanced by a piano that remains in the background like an old friend…an old friend that without him, all would seem a little bear. The outro of the song is simply breathtaking, requiring you catch your breath when it all ends.
For such a hardworking, honest band like Maybeshewill; sticking to their guns in the DIY, they have travelled under the radar for too long. Take this review as an open invitation to jump on the bandwagon…or even create the bandwagon, whatever you do, don’t ignore this band. They are simply too good to ignore and this album is far too good to not listen to. If you were ever uncertain about instrumental music; make this your first listen. You won’t regret it.
Nice review Alex! I unfortunately still can't listen to it yet, but I'm really looking forward to it. These guys definitely deserve more attention than a lot of (U.S.) bands. Hopefully this record will bring them to the states!