The Sun Burns Bright, a solo project from Birmingham, England, is extremely new to the scene having just recently released his first album. I always get excited when a new band releases their debut, it’s like making a new friend for music enthusiasts. This particular friend is soon moving a lot closer to my home in Idaho, he’ll be taking residence in Washington State before too long, adding this solid entry into the incredible library of Pacific Northwest post-rock albums.
RELEASE DATE: 23 January 2018 LABEL: Self-released
Through Dusk, Came The Light has a smooth calmness, like a pond in the wee hours of the morning. The vivid imagery provided by the album title and track titles are indicative of the mood you’ll find throughout the album. From the layered twinklings of “The Glass is Always Full” to the heavier waves of sound in “Sky, Wind, and Waves” that envelop you so warmly, this album is like a hug from a friend that you’ve missed dearly.
However, it is obvious that The Sun Burns Bright isn’t reinventing the wheel with this album; I would be lying if I said it brought something new to the table. His composition has a comforting sense of familiarity. You can tell from tracks such as “Footprints” that the earlier works of This Will Destroy You has a large sway in the composition of it all, rather than hearing influences from Explosions in the Sky (which says a great deal about the man’s taste). Some might see this as a drawback but I stand firmly with the belief that imitation is the sincerest form of flattery. This Will Destroy You has a good idea of where their tracks should go, and The Sun Burns Bright has an equally strong sense of direction.
More importantly, the album shows you something you knew from a different perspective, like a new route up an old hill. While there is a heavy use of crescendos, which are so often used in the post-rock genre, story telling is also at the forefront of this album. As you move along you see how The Sun Burns Bright creates a narrative, and how well his music is telling a story – which makes the whole experience much stronger. Despite its minor shortcomings, it’s incredibly easy to get lost in this album. The emotional pull is very real, and it’s amplified by the fact that all of the tracks are so smooth and close together that you can only hear the individual tracks if you were streaming it. I highly recommend actually downloading it, and experiencing the album as a whole.
For these reasons, it’s had quite a few positive responses. Not to mention that it’s practically a Coastlands album; Their guitarist Jordan did the artwork, their drummer Richard lent a hand (two, technically), and their second guitarist Jason Sissoyev did the remaining instrumentation and post-production. “Wait a minute, how did a one man band from the UK collaborate with Oregon’s Coastlands?” you ask. I’ll tell you.
I kid you not, the original recordings for this album were recorded and transferred to Jason via iPad. They added effects and tracked the other instruments along side it, and later mixed it, but it’s originally an iPad recording. I had the pleasure of hearing Jason’s production work on Long Hallways’ album The Way Home but he knocked it out of the damn park with this, making an outright amateur platform sound so professional.
From the golden touch of Portland, Oregon, to the undeniable influences of Young Mountain, Through Dusk, Came The Light is a solid album for any collector of post-rock, and everyone should make some room on their instrumental playlists for its strong tracks and beautiful tones. A neat balance of story telling, melody and heaviness makes it a good debut effort. If The Sun Burns Bright can build on this solid base and attempts to integrate a few different sounds and styles in the next release, expect to hear more about this project soon.
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