AEGES‘ second full length album, Above & Down Below, sees them galloping confidently over any notion of a sophomore slump. The band has taken another step forward with this collection of twelve songs that are as diverse and individual as they are seamless and flowing.
The label commented:
So welcome to the official pre-order launch for a record we are so excited to finally be releasing! It’s no joke when I tell you we have been listening to this album EVERY DAY for the last three months. Seriously. Here’s what’s up – if you take a pinch of Antenna-era Cave In, a dash of 90’s alt/space-rock heroes Failure & Hum, mix it with a cup of post-hardcore legends Quicksand, and blend it with some Deftones & Queens Of The Stone Age… then you are maybe getting an idea of just how hard this band crushes. That, or maybe you’re just really confused by the ingredients :) To help it make sense, just check out the lead-off track Echoes HERE, and then bang Fault HERE.
It’s an especially admirable feat when you consider how busy the band has stayed since releasing their debut full length, The Bridge, in 2012 (which Ghettoblaster Magazine called “one of the most promising debuts in recent memory”). They’ve effortlessly endured a couple different line-up changes that introduced guitarist/vocalist Cory Clark and drummer Mike Land. The revamped line-up, rounded out by founding member Kemble Walters (vocals/guitar) and Tony Baumeister (bass), was solidified in late 2013 when they began writing the songs that would become Above & Down Below. In between playing shows around the country with Coheed & Cambria, Silver Snakes, Pelican, Big Business and many more bands, as well as writing the new record, and dealing with the line-up changes, the band also found time to further expand their catalog by releasing the Southern Comfort 7″ as well as the Bad Blood split 7″ with label mates Dust Moth (in which former guitarist Mark Holcomb currently plays). They also made a successful inaugural appearance at the annual SXSW Music Festival this past March, and will be heading out hard in support of the new album this fall.
Perhaps because of this steady flow of activity, the songs on Above & Down Below are extremely tight and focused, while being played with a loose confidence and swagger that oozes the spirit of rock and roll. Expanding upon the foundation of the sound that already drew influence from the 90’s post-hardcore era, the new record mixes that same heavy edge of Quicksand with the more melodic heavy rock sheen of Soundgarden, Alice In Chains and Queens of the Stone Age. At times it’s as heavy as lead, crushing and lurching hard, while other times it’s melodic and hook-laden; usually you’ll find this contrast within the same song, which is busy making itself quite at home in your head.
The album was mixed and mastered by Matt Hyde (Deftones, Slayer, Children of Bodom, Behemoth) at his home studio. The band self-produced the effort and Kemble recorded it at The Sound Portal. Casey Howard (Mastodon, Deftones, The Mars Volta, Avenged Sevenfold) handled the art direction, design and layout for the album. The Mylene Sheath (Pelican, Caspian, Junius, Dust Moth) will be releasing the album worldwide on September 23rd.