When Icarus Falls Over the Frozen Seas

When Icarus Falls Over the Frozen Seas
At three songs and over 30 minutes of material, Over the Frozen Seas overflows its EP status. Similarly, the music of Swiss quintet When Icarus Falls seeps past the structural constraints of genre and song like an enlarged microorganism absorbing everything it touches. Over the Frozen Seas is an almost ideal title for a sometimes smooth but often harsh EP that moves forward in waves. There's a persistent build from the hypnotic opening serenade to the crashing peaks of the closing chaos, but in between the songs dip and swell, drop into a semblance of empty stillness and rise again with thunderous momentum. Within this overarching shape individual streams weave and war ― atmospheric drone with pulsing undercurrents, thick layers of distortion opening up to piano and cello (actually a guitar played with a bow), breathy vocal melodies and gravelly howls somewhere between a moan and a wail. In a sense, it's all par for the course for the post-rock/post-hardcore sound Get A Life! Records has consigned the band to. But When Icarus Falls are distinctive enough not to get lost in the crowd. (Get A Life!)