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Microtia - Spacemaker Album Cover

Microtia - Spacemaker

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8.6
MicrotiaSpacemaker
Release Date: July 27, 2010
Record Label: Self-Released
Is there such a genre as post-hardcore-space-rock? If not, I think I may have found it. On Microtia’s sophomore outing, the aptly named Spacemaker , the Oregon quartet seem to have honed in on just such a unique and under-represented genre, while exhibiting the potential to corner the market on it altogether.

Drawing from a variety of influences without losing any originality in the process, Spacemaker crafts a spastic and massive aural experience. Despite hearing bits of At the Drive-In’s grind, Muse’s riffage, and Isis’ drone in the musical composition, the whole equals more than the sum of its parts. That quality alone is a rarity anymore, and Microtia is to be credited for it, as too few bands understand the delicate balance between drawing on an influence and ripping it off outright. Subtle hints of those influences are scattered throughout the album, and in all the right spots. The underlying electric tones serve as a nice counterbalance to the relentless riffs, and create an atmospheric undercurrent that some bands (i.e. Dredg, Circa Survive) usually rely on the guitar to provide. Mention must also be made of the outstanding drumming by Tim Steiner. I’ve never before heard such relentless, heavy, technical percussion seem like such an intricate part of the composition.

I also couldn’t help but notice a compositional method that Microtia seem to have borrowed from their space-rock forbears, Failure. In the majority of Spacemaker’s songs, melodic hooks have been replaced by dissonance and unexpected key changes. Certain chord progressions cause the listener’s ear to expect a melodic right-turn, and it’s in songs like “Early Fish Gets the Worm” that Microtia takes a decidedly hard left. This effect may be grating on some listeners, but I found it an experimental plus to an already unique style.

Spacemaker is not an album I’d recommend listening to unless you’ve got a whole 45 minutes to take in the 9 song soundtrack-to-a-laser-show opus. The tracks all meld pretty seamlessly together, and there aren’t a whole lot of hooks to warrant an enjoyable listen any single one of them on shuffle. The whole album is written in a minor key, and even the “Interlude” is driving and technical. That being said, Microtia could have easily condensed several of the songs, like the overwrought and repetitious “I’ll Fight the Harpsichord”. Eric Leskovar’s voice can seem to be set on monotone in some areas.

The band’s aesthetic is also worth noting. These fine gents have quite the DIY ethic. They claim to have crafted their own instruments and equipment. If that’s so, my complements, as the production is stellar. But that’s not all – their disc comes in a cardboard envelope, finely crafted from the remains of a Coors Light box, and the tracklisting from the front panel of a pack of Marlboros. Whether it’s out of a sense of duty to the green movement, or to idle time in the studio – it’s another unique vestige of a unique musical experience.
It may be overly optimistic to hope that Spacemaker marks Microtia’s attempt to pick up the torch where Cave-In dropped it after Antenna, or too much praise to proclaim a new genre in their behalf. In any case, Microtia’s latest sets the expanses of space to music, and I’m looking forward their next foray into the final frontier.

Recommended If You LikeCave-In - Jupiter; Isis; Failure; Laser-Shows

http://www.myspace.com/microtia
This review is a user submitted review from GeeBee. You can see all of GeeBee's submitted reviews here.
 
Displaying posts 1 - 13 of 13
05:15 PM on 06/11/10
#2
Thomas Nassiff
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I think I'm going to have to buy this. Good writing.
07:20 PM on 06/11/10
#3
Matthew Tsai
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Two things interest me about this:

1. They're from Oregon
2. "post-hardcore-space-rock"

Yumm.
07:34 PM on 06/11/10
#4
GeeBee
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I think I'm going to have to buy this. Good writing.
Many thanks! It's definitely a great album, especially if you miss Cave-In's spacier stuff.
Two things interest me about this:

1. They're from Oregon
2. "post-hardcore-space-rock"

Yumm.
Haha, let me know if you think that's an apt genrefication of the band.
09:48 PM on 06/11/10
#5
Thomas Nassiff
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Many thanks! It's definitely a great album, especially if you miss Cave-In's spacier stuff.

Haha, let me know if you think that's an apt genrefication of the band.
I just checked out their Myspace, this shit is sweet. Where did you buy it? I want to have this Coors Light action in my collection. I might have to review this now lol.
05:09 AM on 06/12/10
#6
GeeBee
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I just checked out their Myspace, this shit is sweet. Where did you buy it? I want to have this Coors Light action in my collection. I might have to review this now lol.
I was on Linda's list of bands that needed reviewed, so I think either she sent it to me, or they did themselves.
The packaging is something else, haha.
07:28 AM on 06/12/10
#7
cwhit412
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I can't find it anywhere.
01:28 PM on 06/12/10
#8
kayteamacpdx
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this album doesnt drop until JULY 27th.. they will PRESALE ALBUM SOON though!! so i would check back to there myspace page a month before drop... this album is the best i have heard in a long time check out reviews in Outburn, Decibel, and the best unsigned band in Alternative Press Magazine. They also tour alot you can always pick up album there... AND in a week they are dropping a free mp3 to the world so grab that!
04:21 PM on 06/12/10
#9
GeeBee
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I just checked out their Myspace, this shit is sweet. Where did you buy it? I want to have this Coors Light action in my collection. I might have to review this now lol.
I can't find it anywhere.
Just FYI-
this album doesnt drop until JULY 27th.. they will PRESALE ALBUM SOON though!! so i would check back to there myspace page a month before drop... this album is the best i have heard in a long time check out reviews in Outburn, Decibel, and the best unsigned band in Alternative Press Magazine. They also tour alot you can always pick up album there... AND in a week they are dropping a free mp3 to the world so grab that!

Thanks much for the update, I wasn't aware. Lucky me that I already have it!
04:24 PM on 06/12/10
Thomas Nassiff
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Damn it. If it doesn't come out till then I shouldn't have put it up. But I guess since you got it from Linda it's all good.
05:38 PM on 06/12/10
GeeBee
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Damn it. If it doesn't come out till then I shouldn't have put it up. But I guess since you got it from Linda it's all good.
Well, it's been reviewed far and wide on the web, so I don't think it'll be a problem.
09:26 AM on 07/12/10
kayteamacpdx
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just email the band.....

Tim Steiner <microtiabooking@gmail.com>

he will get you what you need. They have drank enough beer and smoked enough grits to get the albums for release made!

xo kaytea
03:50 PM on 07/28/10
kayteamacpdx
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this album is awesome! https://www.cdbaby.com/cd/microtia2 Where you can buy the album! dropped yesterday!

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