Debuting their first live album since their introduction to the post-rock scene a few years ago, This Will Destroy You give a taster of their live shows to the people who are sadly unable to attend a real one. The bands first live album ‘Live In Reykjavik, Iceland’ sees This Will Destroy You spanning their whole career, offering songs from their first EP to their sophomore album effort. The whole effort has many merits, with each track flowing into each other in phenomenal form, as though they could have all come from the same album. Although the album is enjoyable in some respects, it also lets itself down in many others, presenting as one of This Will Destroy You’s most disappointing and weakest releases in their career so far.
‘Live In Reykjavik, Iceland’ is a nice insight into the band’s live atmosphere, as are most live albums. This Will Destroy You offer up a very interesting performance, featuring a nice variety of tracks spanning across their career. The main focal point of the album’s sound seems to be around the elements of dark-ambient and drone that the band have been utilizing in their more recent releases. There’s a lot of fuzz to the noise the band build up, before they let it explode in a crescendo of droning buzzes that form the crux of their music. To some extent there’s variety on the album as well, with a few moments offering up more of a traditional post-rock experience of guitar lines and bass and what-not which keeps the live album interesting enough.
The problem is though that ‘Live in Reykjavik, Iceland’ doesn’t really offer much to the fans of This Will Destroy You who didn’t attend the concert. The production of the album sounds a little flawed at times, with there not being much inclination that it even is a live concert (except for one moment of applause near the album’s end). It’s a shame as there should be a lot much enjoyable elements coming from This Will Destroy You, who managed to establish themselves as one of the better post-rock bands in their early career, and one of recognition. ‘Live In Reykjavik, Iceland’ just seems lackluster at times, oddly enough sounding a little too reserved. It doesn’t feel like a true offering of the band’s live capabilities, and thus it is a huge disappointment, especially to fans of the band who couldn’t attend as it the album itself doesn’t sound much different to a greatest hits compilation.
Sadly, This Will Destroy You have really let themselves down with their current release. Even their polarizing second album had a lot more to offer than this live album that just doesn’t reach the heights that the band are so clearly capable of. The track-listing doesn’t even offer some of This Will Destroy You’s best tracks, which doesn’t necessarily hurt the overall album’s sound, but considering how weak a few of the tracks sound, it does warrant some consideration why they weren’t included. If this is an inclination into the power of This Will Destroy You’s live setting, then it doesn’t really show it in the best of lights. Perhaps with This Will Destroy You, it’s better to just stick with the albums instead.
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This Will Destroy You’s latest live album ‘Live In Reykjavik, Iceland’ is out now and can be purchased at: http://magicbulletrecords.bandcamp.com/