iLiKETRAiNS makes music, enjoys locomotives

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The first lines in the first song of the first album by Leeds-based iLiKETRAiNS (yes, it’s stylized just like that), sung by frontman David Martin, go as such:

“How could I / Have led these men to their demise / And they just follow?”

It’s not a particularly optimistic sentiment, sure, and the fact that Martin is voicing it in his deep, creaky baritone doesn’t help matters. But joy isn’t iLiKETRAiNS’ game. That first song, “Terra Nova,” details the true story of the failed South Pole expedition undertaken by explorer Robert Scott. As Scott resigns his quest, the instruments quickly swell.  Distortion soon kicks in and the track speeds towards a rather epic climax, a wall of sound not-quite-but-almost punctured by Martin’s vocals.

And that, in a nutshell, is an iLiKETRAiNS song. The band combines the buildup style of post-rock with Martin’s often historically based lyrics, letting all hell break loose as the track comes to a close. What makes this band so special, though, is the atmosphere it can so easily create. The quieter sections are never frightening, but always ominous, and the climax of each song is simply devastating.

The group recently released an instrumental EP, The Christmas Tree Ship, but based on live performances, it looks like the next release is going to be more in the regular style of the band. As cool as The Christmas Tree Ship is, the return to form is something I’ll be waiting for with open arms.

iLiKETRAiNS – “We All Fall Down” [MP3] (from Elegies to Lessons Learnt)

iLiKETRAiNS – “Terra Nova” [MP3] (from Progress Reform)

iLiKETRAINS – “A Rook House for Bobby” [MP3] (from Progress Reform)

iLiKETRAiNS on MySpace

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