The Appleseed Cast started their musical experiments in the second half of the 90's, toured the world, put out 4 full-length albums, and now arrive at a precarious place in their career. They've been there... but they haven't done this yet.
The latest album by The Appleseed Cast, Peregrine, is: spacious, thick, brooding, joyful, explosive, and back and forth, yet somehow seamless at the same time. Peregrine carries tones and sounds (at times) as stormy and spooky as the albums theme/storyline lends. All in 13 tracks, Peregrine significantly yields what the bands last four albums offered striking glimpses of. Overcoming a reflective hiatus to their career-defining, long-awaited return, The Appleseed Cast reemerge-- living out their Fight Songs and Mile Markers.
On June 7, 2011, the Appleseed Cast will introduce its latest offering, the Middle States EP via Graveface Records.
Since forming in 1997, the Appleseed Cast has morphed from one of the definitive bands of the emo era into a group that has continued to open up the possibilities of rock music. Whether cloaked in delicate melodies, atmospherics and instrumental experimentation, or stripped down to the band's spin on the basics of rock 'n' roll, with each new recording fans around the world have learned to expect the unexpected.
Middle States seems an appropriate title for the band's latest release. It could be read as signifying the band's home town of Lawrence, Kansas (a "middle" state if there ever was one), the EP's place in the trajectory of the band's career, a piece that alludes to its progress between its gripping seventh album, Sagargatha (2009) and it's already eagerly-anticipated eighth record (due out on Graveface in early 2012). Or, as the title track suggests, the middle stages and transitional periods of life.
Heard through the lush, brightly textured harmonies led by singer and co-founder Chris Crisci, change is a pretty alright thing. For the Middle States EP, The Appleseed Cast sequestered itself in its own recording "compound," having fallen in love with the freedom of crafting records without the time and budget constraints of a traditional studio during home sessions for Sagarmatha. The relaxed pace and familiar setting has served the band well. Opening the EP is cinematic rocker "End Frigid Constellations," a song that evokes so many feelings and imagery it seems epic despite its relative shortness. The finale, "Three Rivers," contains many of the EPs most majestic moments and showcasing the band's live prowess and tight musicianship. The song marks the band's first completely improvised release, but with any luck it won't be the last.
Middle States gives insight into a band that is constantly reinventing itself and growing stronger with each passing year. If the EP is a teaser of things yet to come, we can only say it's working brilliantly.