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Monday, January 31, 2011

Rosetta -- A Determinism of Morality

"Metal for Astronauts" masters, Rosetta, may say their band is not named for the famous stone of translation. Regardless, their music translates sound into emotion. On their newest full length, A Determinism of Morality, Rosetta reach heights seldom scaled in any genre. Words like "majestic" and "grandeur" don't do this music justice. Thematically, Determinism speaks to the incredible beauty of simply being alive, the brutally ephemeral nature of the experience. and how this shortness and fragility only make life more extraordinary. The only sung vocal comes in the exact middle of the album, track four, "Release":
The problem with now is no matter how much we want it to, it doesn't last forever
The rest of the vocals come in the form of Michael Armine's shouted scream, acting as just another instrument in the mix. This should come as a relief to those averse to screaming; while his vocals are extremely powerful, they never overwhelm the work his band mates have done. The music has a very rise-and-fall feel. The cymbals crash in between bursts and rolls of tom tom, the guitars pick out beautifully delicate lines then bludgeon with meaty power chords, the bass alternates between thrums and grooves. Subtle keyboard adds power and mysticism. While the expected build up and release structures are present, Rosetta adds more layers to the schematics than usual, making the results often unpredictable, and always interesting. However, this is music you FEEL, not music you get hung up on on a technical level. It is also addictive--your serotonin levels will be peaking on every listen.
This is a top release of 2010 without question and could make any best of the year list, mine included...too bad I am only hearing it now.

Sounds like Explosions in the Sky on steroids.

2010 Translation Loss Records
1. Ayil 4:59
2. Je N'en connais Pas la Fin 6:49
3. Blue Day for Croatoa 6:37
4. Release 5:36
5. Revolve 6:43
6. Renew 6:09
7. A Determinism of Morality 10:51

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