Tides / Giant Split CD

Two post-rock instrumental groups contribute tunes to the CD version of last year’s vinyl split. Boston’s Tides follow the trajectory of former Beantown heavyweights Isis, though this foursome — led by three childhood friends — are more introspective and textural. With two releases to their credit, including their 2005 debut full-length Resurface, Tides are overdue for new material. Nine-minute opener "The Invisible” involves fast, almost black-metal picking and lots of tribal drumming, meandering into Pelican territory. "Unfinished Highways” is a shorter, multi-layered affair on acoustic guitars with plinking piano that’s reminiscent of Pink Floyd’s "Echoes.” North Carolina’s Giant, on the other hand, do have vocals but they comprise such a fraction of their lone 12-minute track that the band should rightfully be filed under instru-metal. "Horned and Blind” goes through several crescendos like neighbours Disappearer, and the death-y vocalist sounds like the second cousin of Obituary’s John Tardy. Despite their trend-following sound, both Tides and Giant will benefit from longer releases in the future. (Teenage Disco Bloodbath/Level Plane)