Maritime â€“ Heresy and the Hotel Choir / 2007 Flameshovel / 12 Tracks / http://www.flameshovel.com /
For those individuals that do not know who Maritime is, the band consists of members from both The Dismemberment Plan and the Promise Ring. They released their first full length â€œGlass Floorâ€ in 2004, and followed that up with a 2006 release in â€œWe, the Vehiclesâ€. This, their third album, shows a very mature band that straddles the line between early emo sound, The Red Hot Valentines, and even a punk type of style at points. The first track on the album is â€œGuns of Navaroneâ€, and it allows dreamy vocals to be paired alongside punchy, smart arrangements. What began as a softly stated track will bounce around listenerâ€™s heads for months after listening to this disc, even if â€œGuns of Navaroneâ€ is the furthest that individuals get into the disc.
The slow burn that is present during â€œWith Holes for Thumb Sized Birdsâ€ allows individuals to get into a different state of mind when it comes to Maritime. There are not the direct linkages to earlier musical styles present during â€œWith Holesâ€ that there were during â€œGuns of Navaroneâ€. This changed style gives the band that much luster and allows them to continue strongly into the second half of the disc. Thus, a track like â€œPearlâ€ is able to showcase Maritime as an act that can conceivably make a sea change to their overall sound and still have the same supporters. â€œPearlâ€: is a track that shows a little bit of an appreciation for the electronic-heavy sound of â€œSynchronictyâ€-era Policy and even Brian Henley. The band is still heavily based in the post-emo sounds crafted by a number of bands in the late nineties, but Maritime easily plays to the present as much as they do to the past.
In an era when many bands go forth and stick a few tracks onto a disc with a majority of chaff, the solid sound presented to listeners during â€œHeresy and the Hotel Choirâ€ stands out as a sterling example of what individuals and bands should strive for. Whether it be the inclusion of a little bit of alt-country and surf music during â€œHours That You Keepâ€ or the straight-forward rock of the aforementioned â€œGuns of Navaroneâ€, there is something for everyone on this album. Maritime has some big shoes to fill in regards to the accomplishments made by the membersâ€™ previous bands, but it is only a matter of time before the act eclipses even the successes of a Promise Ring.
Top Tracks: Hours That You Keep, First Night on Earth