LabelThe Mylene Sheath
Tracklist1. Genetics Like Chess Pieces
3. Those Who Came Before Pt. 1
4. Those Who Came Before Pt. 2
5. The Nameless
6. The Timeless
7. Identify the Indiscernibles
8. External Reoccurrence
9. Abraxis Pt. 1
10. Abraxis Pt. 2
Your RatingCreate an account or log in to rate this album
Constants have been around for quite awhile now, with three releases under their belt, and have earned the attention of post-rock fans all over the world. However, while the band’s earlier releases were a rough glimpse into what Constants had to offer, their latest full length – The Foundation, The Machine, The Ascension – truly showcases what the band is capable of within this 60-minute dreamlike journey.
Like many post-rock bands, listening to a Constants' album takes patience, with numerous songs eclipsing the six-minute mark, although the band throws in some three to four minute tunes in between to give the listener a break between the longer songs – a very smart move on their part. Another interesting aspect of this release is that the songs go together in pairs; so for example, track one and two are connected musically, songs three and four also flow into each other, and the cycle repeats for all twelve tracks. Additionally, by listening to the tone of the music, reading the album title as well as the song names, it seems like Constants also split the album into three different sections.
The first four songs have a dreamy feel to them and will most likely put listeners into a trance by the end of the fourth track. The opener, “Genetics Like Chess Pieces,” starts off slowly but powerfully as it transitions into a beautiful melody supported by a groove-oriented rhythm section and eventually settles down into the verse. It is here that the listener is first introduced to the vocals which aren’t outstanding but add to the gritty feel of the music and definitely deserve a place on the album. Furthermore, the next three tracks are along the same lines as the first one, with soft verses followed by a heavier chorus.
The following four songs have a darker vibe to them and are almost depressing in a way. The music is noticeably slower, with haunting guitar melodies, with even the vocals sounding sadder. “External Reoccurrence” is particularly noteworthy as the band trudges through over three minutes of disorientation with vocals that echo back and forth, and the drums also have an odd effect to them, making for an overall sound that is hard to put into words.
The last four tracks are more powerful than the previous ones and have an uplifting feel to them, which goes along with what would presumably be the name for this last section – The Ascension. “Abraxas Pt.1” starts off this segment and is more upbeat than the previous tracks, almost feeling frantic in a way. This song is one of the few completely instrumental tracks on the album and serves as a nice bridge to the last few songs, with the final song sounding like a compilation of all the various tones heard throughout the rest of the album that ends on an uplifting note.
Some people may disagree with this interpretation of The Foundation, The Machine, The Ascension but there’s no denying the beauty and musical mastery Constants display here over the course of an hour. The only blatant issue with this release is that the vocals will be an acquired taste for many listeners, and the singing does take away from the music at times. That being said, Constants have assembled a monster of an album that is sure to please its listeners, particularly fans of post-rock.