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ARTIST
TITLE
Seawards
FORMAT
CD

LABEL
CATALOG #
TYPE 010CD TYPE 010CD
GENRE
RELEASE DATE
4/18/2006

This is the long-awaited debut release from Sickoakes. Harking from the vodka-drenched tundra of Sweden, Sickoakes are a fluid six-piece (sometimes there's four...) who make sprawling cascades of orchestral post-rock which appears to be accruing glowing adjectives, like moths to a flame. Sickoakes have been leaking CD-Rs for years now, and there has been a bubbling interest in their next move. Massaging disparate elements into a delicious, cohesive whole, Seawards manages to evoke the ocean and its belligerent mood-swings to perfection; opening with the tender "Driftwood" and closing an hour later with the malignantly euphoric "Leonine." While ostentatiously labeled post-rock, Sickoakes do not adhere to the clipped wing schematic that has so come to blight the genre; eschewing the quiet-loud-quiet-loud-quiet approach for a richly textured and profoundly moving journey that earns its accolades rather than attempting to Xerox those of others. Sharing a twilight disposition with label-mates Deaf Center, crossed with the effervescent genius of Mogwai - "Driftwood" ushers you in through delicate piano and an achingly poignant melody which brings to mind the less sun-blushed output of Ennio Morricone, while "Taking The Stairs Instead Of The Elevator" roams brusquely into view with an odd (yet compelling) combination of British folk, chiming guitars, spaghetti horns and staccato rhythms. The result? Genre-defying. Elsewhere, "Oceans On Hold" reclaims a killer guitar part and lets it spiral skywards amongst breathlessly rendered instrumentation and AM samples. "Missiles And Mammals" transports you to a starry-eyed retreat through lashings of snow capped strings, while the truly epic "Wedding Rings & Bullets In The Same Golden Shrine (Part I & II)" cements Sickoakes' position alongside Explosions in the Sky and Mogwai as purveyors of un-cut, grade-A aural necromancy. In other words, this is just about as good as it gets.."