Hail the Sun does not break their mold
After two years of existence with their explosive “Elephantitis EP,” aggressive post-rock group Hail the Sun released “Wake.” Despite the heavy subject matter, dark themes and spotless polish in “Elephantitis,” Hail The Sun has returned with lyrics just as moving and music just as powerful.
Unlike the EP, the album opens with subdued “Rolling Out The Red Carpet.” The song doesn’t explode into yelled lines and violent riffs, but starts over a calm dissonance, with Melero singing about bloodlust. From here, the album dives into political themes in “Human Target Practice,” one of the singles released before the full LP, a call-back to the previous album with its up-tempo snare-rim intro, but shortly afterwards mellow harmonies are juxtaposed against it and it works. The harsh drive against the soft lyrics of singer-drummer Melero is what makes this a Hail the Sun track.
The album’s lyrical material isn’t all heavy, political music. “Relax/Divide,” the somber, slow halfway mark of the album is something unexpected for a group that so regularly tears through three minutes of time at neck-breaking paces.
Before this, the band takes a topic some groups purposely move to avoid, and somehow puts it to a beat worth dancing to.
By the end of the album, we’re greeted with “Jane Doe,” a quiet, arguably acoustic track lacking drums, but heavily produced. Had the track been released right after “Elephantitis,” it would seem out of place, but after experiencing Wake, the track feels congruent with the rest of the album. It sounds like it could fit easily on the back end of The Mars Volta’s “Amputechture.” This addition of two slower pieces in this piece is a change well welcomed. The hills and valleys experienced because of the songs note maturity not always experienced by hard-rock bands, that would otherwise leave you with a playlist that is only up and up.
To wrap it up, the band ends it all with “Anti-Eulogy (i wish you were dead),” just in case you had forgotten they could rip through a track. The song features instrumental passages that are both mathematical, arrhythmic and vocal stylings that are reminiscent of “Will They Blame Me If You Go Disappearing?” from “Elephantitis.”