The recent release of the ear gripping single, Fear, not only re-sparked a natural fascination with the sounds of US psych rock outfit Tombstones in Their Eyes but led us to an exploration of the compilation of earlier songs released towards the close of last year, the aptly named encounter Collection.
The double album brings together select tracks taken from 2015 debut album, Sleep Forever, and the subsequent Bad Clouds, Fear and Nothing Here EPs as well as acclaimed single, Shutting Down; each track having been re-mastered and some also remixed. The Los Angeles band’s sonic prowess and psych rock bred sound has been firmly established as imaginative and resourceful across their previous releases and one constantly evolving to find greater strength and temptation with their last album, Maybe Someday, proving spellbinding. Collection bears the seeds and growth of that sound, each of its tracks a potent moment in that journey and come as fresh as the day they were unveiled.
Sleep Forever opens up the release, the band’s sonorous sound instantly enveloping the senses if with controlled intent. Soon its gentle but sonically imposing stroll is in command, a manipulation within a growing haze of noise that like the warm vocals of John Treanor increasingly captivates. It is a blend which has centred the band’s music throughout the years, a bedding from which imagination and enterprise has blossomed and now openly highlighted by Collection.
The following My Head Is Fighting Me is a serenade as clamorous and invasive as it is seductive while Happy from a soothing melodic hand casts a searing yet still soporifically bewitching captivation. It is a haunting track with a tendency to fry the senses whilst already showing the maybe reserved but potent diversity in the band’s sound even within that first full-length, Sleep Forever.
Gone Again and I’m Already There keenly push the aspects of sound and release, the first a sweltering surround of ears with a compelling swing and the second the bearer of the band’s more indie pop nurtured instincts. The individuality of the band’s sound is boldly apparent and relishing the fresh breath given them within Collection, just as the more primal I Can’t See the Light. The track has an untamed bearing to its sonic haze but equally a rapturous air to its melodic and vocal radiance. It is an alignment of dark trespass and shoegaze beauty which has and still enthrals.
The post rock scent of the song equally emerged within the other tracks of the Bad Clouds EP and again makes for a compelling incitement here within that release’s claustrophobic but lustrous title track, the swarthy psych rock intrigue and contagion of Everybody’s Dead, and the resonance sharing, raw infection loaded You’re To Blame. Both songs continue to lead our favourite Tombstones in Their Eyes track choices and seem only to blossom again within the compilation.
The blending of contrasting yet mutual enterprising textures and emotions fed the heart of the Fear EP and I Want to Fly epitomises that perfect alignment, the song raw and invasive yet equally gracefully seductive and heavenly beguiling within its creative tempest.
Similarly Separate, with its rhythmic swagger and invasive sonic haze, is a cavernous fusion of extremes which the sombre yet arresting Always There and Another Day with its heavy sigh and rapturous melancholic emulate with individuality and unique captivation; the sensational last a resounding temptation which borders on the tumultuous.
The portentous darkness within the track Fear and contrastingly its euphoric air makes for another momentous encounter which Shutting Down matches with its shoegaze lit canter and pop cured sway. Each track is memorable and rich entries into the varied aspects of the Tombstones In Their Eyes adventure as too the imposingly mesmeric B-side to the single, Take Me Home.
The final trio of songs are just as potent in that reveal, each from the Nothing Here EP. Each of Silhouette, Take Me Away, and the EP’s title track are as unique to each other as those before them, the first a raucous incursion of unrefined sonic and melodic intoxication and its successor a sonorous yet composed siren call upon similar but individual post rock incursions. The final song is a serenade upon volatile sounds and textures, a final psyche twisting call upon ears and the imagination which is impossible to ignore.
Tombstones In Their Eyes is a band for which anticipation of their next proposal is instinctive for a great many, their Collection gives you all the reasons why.
Collection is available @ https://tombstonesswc.bandcamp.com/album/collection digitally and on CD and vinyl.
Pete RingMaster 11/03/2021
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