NY in 64‘s dynamic, textural and multifaceted take on post-hardcore provides for an enthralling listening experience on their sophomore full-length, The Gentle Indifference of the Night.
This wholly instrumental quartet, whose members have served time in the likes of East of the Wall, You and I, among others, presents a unique approach to the post-hardcore style. These Jersey boys take pages from the 90s wave of post-hardcore acts, while liberally introducing more intricacy, as well as a nice amount of progressive flair (à la East of the Wall). The result here is a half-hour of meticulously arranged, yet driving metallic splendor.
The Gentle Indifference of the Night extensively builds upon the material of its 2015 self-titled predecessor, delivering six new tunes that are more aggressive and complex than the material that came before them. The album’s first cut, “Couldn’t Be Saved”, makes this abundantly clear when it comes thundering in.
Justin Hock and Chris Alfano’s dueling, tremolo-picked riffs open up the six-minute, shape-shifting tune by soaring on top of Thomas Schlatter’s corrosive bass lines and Seth Rheam’s seismic drumming. Soon the instrumentation switches from storming assaults to off-kilter hardcore as the guitars churn out angular, frenzied riffs that frequently shift between discordance and straightforwardness. This controlled chaos eventually leads to lengthy section of introspective, ethereal melodies, which builds into a driving, triumphant climax. “Couldn’t Be Saved” confidently displays the different shades of NY in 64‘s musical repertoire, making it the perfect opening number to suck listeners in.
Tracks like “The Endless Spiral” and “50lbs of Ash” show the band at their most aggressive. While moments of atmospheric post-rock do make an appearance on these songs, they are less pronounced than the overtly hard-hitting and dizzying displays of musical virtuosity. Here Alfano and Hock readily exchange frantic, spiraling licks that intertwine with one another like mating serpents above a hellacious rhythm section (“The Endless Spiral”), or conversely the band opt for more high octane, towering hardcore attacks (“50lbs of Ash”).
But then there are moments like “Her Chosen Hell” that sidestep the album’s well-crafted turbulence. The album’s closing track is awash with glimmering melodies and an icy blend of post-hardcore rhythm and post-rock serenity. Rheam crafts steady, yet deceptively complex rhythms while Schlatter’s bass lines lurch in intricate patterns. Hock and Alfano weave together myriads of riffs that are smothered in atmosphere and gleaming, melodic fervor. Layers of shimmering instrumentation build upon one another as the rhythm section begins to become more elaborate, eventually resulting in a fiery climax of post-hardcore grandeur.
Once The Gentle Indifference of the Night grabs the listener’s attention, it will not let go. NY in 64‘s eclectic approach to post-hardcore and impressive songwriting chops makes for a solid LP that is both intensely passionate and sonically devastating. It strikes a near perfect balance between being heavy, melodic and elaborate, and is a wild ride throughout.
Release Date: May 26, 2017
Label: Magic Bullet Records
Favorite Tracks: “Couldn’t Be Saved”, “The Endless Spiral” and “Don’t Breathe Out”
For Fans Of: East of the Wall, Drive Like Jehu, Irepress and Carved Up