Anu Beginning - We Move Mountains
Record Label: Self Released
Release Date: March 13, 2011
If you are a punk purist, old school emo adorer, hipster or the type of person who regularly likes to remind people of what post-hardcore used to be like, then you should probably stop reading right now. No, seriously, stop. Hit the return button at the top of your window, or just click on a different tab. I can whole-heartedly inform you that you will not like this album. Ontario’s Anu Beginning deal in the type of music that, after one listen, makes you presume that they all have incredibly well sculpted side fringes. Yes, I’m talking about metalcore for the masses. With We Move Mountains, their first full length album, Anu Beginning, comprised of Aaron Webb on drums, Tanner Havens (awesome name) on bass, PJ Kellestine on guitar, Aaron Barry on guitar as well as vocals and Matt Saunders also vocals, have released ten tracks of energetic pop metal that sometimes surprise but are never going to set the world on fire.
Kicking off with the title track, We Move Mountains is straight into moshing territory. A brief gang shout makes way for precise, if somewhat predictable guitar lines and breakdowns. Guttural screaming entwines with clean vocals in the same way that has almost become common practice for the majority of new bands on the scene, however, contrary to most of these bands, the growls are the essential vocals on the track and the clean vocals are unnecessary and slightly grating. Next comes “Sleeping With Fish”, the main single off the release. At times it captures the sound of early A Day To Remember in a promising manner but the ridiculous lyrics (“...now you’re sleeping with the fish...”) are off-putting. Full of energy and quite catchy, it can’t help but be thought that with a little more imagination, this could have been a very popular track.
“Sorry Efendi, Did I Fail You?” follows the same path as its predecessors. “You’re My Calvary” seems to explain the inclusion of Blink 182 in the “Sounds Like” box on their MySpace page. It’s a departure from the previous tracks, with a completely different sound, and is surprisingly catchy. Definitely among the best tracks of the album, it’s pop punk in the vein of Me Vs Hero and is actually very good.
“Maybe Real Friends” and “Quiet Your Voice” return to the metalcore blueprint and are decent, but are ultimately forgettable.
“Frontiers” attempts something different, throwing post-rock into the mixture and is probably the best track on the release and “Repo Me” sounds the exact same as at least three other songs on the album. “Weight Of The World” is an acoustic strummer culminating in gang singing. I repeat, singing. Not gang shouts, just clean singing. It has a very different air to the rest of the release and would have worked perfectly as a closer, unlike the actual closer. “Aaron’s Clawfoot Bathtub” obligingly brings the breakdowns but is quite bland and forgettable.
We Move Mountains is the sound of a band still finding their feet. At times they show promise, but on the straight up metalcore tracks, they come across as just another group of kids jumping on the scene bandwagon. It’s a release full of youthful energy and exuberance but only time will tell if Anu Beginning are here to stay.