An EP can only give you a quick look as to what a band can accomplish. It’s usually just enough songs to wet your appetite or make you upset to your stomach depending on how good or bad the release is. When first hearing The Snake The Cross The Crown’s debut EP, Like a Moth Before a Flame, it was instantly one of my favorite releases of the year. The whole indie-electronic sound was something that really deviated away from everything else. Hearing the keyboards used in a non-pop rock aspect, was something I really wasn’t used to listening to. It was an album that I had no idea what to expect going into listening to it and it surprised me in such a positive manner.
But as previously mentioned, an EP can only give you a little taste of what a band can do; a small sampling so to speak. The full length is where you can really separate what a band is all about and if they are worthy of playing on your CD player. Some bands fall on their face after an exciting EP, while others take their music to another level of greatness. Such is the case with The Snake The Cross The Crown. They have really delivered with their full length, the whole indie-electronic rock sound is present but the songs are more structured all around. Like the EP, the full length embodies a certain mood and disposition that is fairly dark and dim. There is definitely a representation of growth from the EP to the Mander Salis full length. This album finds the flow of the music to be tamer and slowed down. A greater emphasis is placed on intricate programmed introductions to the songs.
It is clear that these guys definitely have a niche for bending the bar and releasing music that is extremely diverse and full of precision and exactness within the songs. Mander Salisis an innovative, ahead of its time and distinguishing well thought-out style of music with keyboards and programming, rhythmic guitars and precision drumming that are combined with lyrics of cynicism, obsession, and splendor. The keyboards and programming are used in such a different dynamic where they aren’t very uplifting. They are used more to set the mood.
Last year, these guys made my end of the year list of top albums with their debut EP. Come this December, you will be seeing them again, this time they will be more towards the top of my list.
(Equal Vision Records)