The Belle Jar- Union Station
Mar 5, 2014
“The Big Roar”—has there ever been a more fitting title for a band’s debut album? The Joy Formidable closely mirrors the furious grandiosity of contemporaries Silversun Pickups and the similarities are noticeably striking. But, the big-hearted wall-of-sound that The Joy Formidable churns out with much ease really is a big roar, and one that doesn’t lose its luster on repeat listens.
Every song has single potential, so it’s even harder to choose the few that really stand out. Yawping opener “The Everchanging Spectrum of a Lie” is an eight-minute epic that starts off small and only gets louder and bolder, eventually culminating in super-fast drum and guitar pounds that can easily raise the blood pressure.
“A Heavy Abacus” layers the distorted crunch on thick. The loud-quiet-loud dynamic, once a staple of alternative acts, is given a revival by The Joy Formidable on this mighty jam. With echoes of My Bloody Valentine’s misty shoegaze and Smashing Pumpkins’ sour-then-sweet dream pop, the middle of the album is the cream filling in a deliciously heavy Oreo.
The Big Roar is a romantic affair—an intrepid and loud one—but an experience that lives up to its name.
Watch the video for "Austere":