August 7, 2010

Song Review: Envy's "Dreams Coming To An End"

As temperatures dip, the sunlight becomes less sparse by the day and the elongated days of summer near their end, it becomes more difficult to fill your earbuds with the breezy, beachcomber sounds that have made up your regular rotation since Memorial Day weekend. Enter Envy, Japan's preeminent screamo band that has been a constant in the scene well before the genre became bastardized and watered down by copious imitators in the early 2000s. The five-piece has evolved immensely over the past two decades by throwing fans an array of post-hardcore and autumnal post-rock elements that never cease to come short of emotionally gripping results. When we last heard the Tokyo band, they were exploring instrumental atmospheric territories on a split with American counterparts, Thursday. On the track "Dreams Coming To An End" off their upcoming release, Recitation, Envy returns back to Earth with their signature screamo sound, revitalized and sounding new again. "Dreams Coming To An End" is a shorter and more succinct track from Envy, clocking in at a little over four minutes (a contrast to the more long-form songs they've tended to release over the past decade.) What has not changed is the quintet's reliance on barraging listeners with guitars from all angles. Thunderously rough guitars. Delicate bridges. Technically sound layered effects. Envy are true masters of their genre, and this song is a most cohesive display of everything they have brought to the table over the past 20 years. While not necessarily understandable (unless you speak Japanese,) there is a larger amount of lyrical content from the get-go, unlike their 2004 album, Insomniac Doze. Fans of Thursday will see more similarities between the two bands here than on their 2008 split, as band members trades off between spoken word verses and screams. Overall, "Dreams Coming To An End" is a pleasant departure from the post-rock sprawl Envy has inhabited in their most recent releases, yet marks a fresh return to their screamo roots. Amid these dying days of summer, we begin to mourn the loss of the sunlight and carefree feelings the season offers us. As "Dreams Coming To An End" shows us, taking comfort in what we know best may be just what we need to get through the darkness even when the earth's rotation isn't on our side.

Envy - "Dreams Coming To An End"

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