Approach Wings of Monarchs

With the melodic guitars and echoed, earnest vocals on the first track, "Here Comes My Ride,” there was a nagging feeling that Wings of Monarchs was just another emo album to add to the pile. Happily though, Vancouver BC’s the Approach quickly veer away from that particular genre, and throughout the album touch on pieces of math rock, post-rock, metal and even include the use of a vocoder. In all those disparate genres, the sound is usually heavy, but with attention to nuances, whether it’s the strings in "En Topos” or audio samples in "The Role of the Coroner.” The Approach confidently bounce around genre to genre, but this multiple personality disorder leaves a feeling of batching together old songs, rather than putting together a tight LP. Sometimes, like on "Ou Topos,” they start to really get somewhere great, but then the song suddenly shuts down. Wings of Monarchs works better as a song-by-song showcase of where the band’s head is at, rather than a definitive statement of an overall aim. That isn’t to say the Approach aren’t a good band, for the instrumentation, organisation and passion in some of the songs really comes through and probably make for a blistering live show. When the Approach hunker down and make up their mind to what sound they want, many good things will happen. Until then, chalk this up to a good-LP-but-better-EP situation. (Flyer)