The In Depth Album – REVIEW – Phantoms, Marianas Trench

Welcome to a new feature that I write on a regular basis all about new music coming the United Kingdom. When looking for new band or a new album to listen to, you want something that is going to create an impact and stay with you for one reason or another.

This month Marianas Trench’s latest album Phantoms is released on CD in the UK and if you haven’t had a chance yet to listen to the album on streaming services then you should make it your mssion to buy this album.

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So firstly, who is Marianas Trench? 

Marianas Trench are from Vancouver, Canada and they formed in 2001 and is made up of Josh Ramsey, Matt Webb, Mike Ayley and Ian Casselman. They released their first official album in 2006 called Fix Me which featured singles such as Shake Tramp, Say Anything and Decided to Break It. Since then the band have released four more albums, won a number of awards (including Groups of the ear at the 2013 Juno Awards) and have reached number 1 in the music charts.


Let’s Talk about Phantoms

Phantoms is the bands fifth album and it has already been making a huge buzz in Canada and the USA as it debuted at number 1 in the Pop iTunes chart knocking Ariana Grandes Thank U, Next off of the top spot.

If you are unaware of the bands past albums then you should be aware that their songs will take you on an adventure. Phantoms takes you on a musical journey sort of like a cinematic experience. Unlike its predecessor Astoria, this album is a lot dark and also magically haunting. The album is based around the theme of a house that has been possessed by the spirit of the loss by somebody has been driven to madness by the ghost of a former love.

If you are new to the band Marianas Trench, then my advice is to listen to the new album in it’s entirety because you get taken on a narrative journey and listening to only one song at a time does not give this band justice due to the amount of creativity they produce with an album


Stand Out Tracks on Phantoms 

If you want a sample of the sort of tracks that are on the album then I definitely recommend listening to the songs below as they really give an idea as to what sort of sound you can expect and are the stand out tracks.

Echoes of You

This song is one of the highlights of this album as it takes you on a narrative journey both lyrically and musically. The lyrics really define what this album is about and the music construction is something like you have never heard before.

The one thing that is great about this bad is that they are not afraid to take risks; the use of electronic sounds intertwined with generic rock instrumentals really creates a haunting yet wonderful dance style track.

There are two things that make this song a stand out track and the first is the use of strings and orchestral instruments. The strings that are used throughout the song create a wonderfully haunting and amazing narrative structure. Halfway through the track the whole musical structure of the song completely changes with a staccato style of the plucking on the strings and that with Josh Ramsey reaching the iconic high notes, make it hauntingly beautiful.

 

I Knew You When

This was one of the official singles off the album so it can be listened to as a stand alone song and bot be affected. This is a very catchy track with a great drum bass line and a very addictive chorus that whilst the lyrics may be sad, the music makes it uplifting and feels like a metaphor of the theme of memories and potentially re-ignited love.

 

The Death Of Me 

This is a really interesting concept for a song and the place when it really made my eyes open is to how clever this song was actually the end part and from the last part of the song I fell in love with it.

This is the penultimate song on the album and if you look at this song and album it sort of feels like a film. (which I think you can say about a lot of their albums). It is sort of a song about the fallen hero starting to conclude their feelings and how the ‘narrative of the film (album) has effected them to be the person they are becoming or changing into. Compared to the other songs on the album, it is musically very different and also so clever.

Throughout the song it has a heavy drum beat which is underlined with an electronic tone. Near the end of the song the dynamics change with strings being introduced and it feels like the character is transforming into its true self.

Fans of Marianas Trench will also recognise the underlying orchestral tones that are very similar to the music strands that ran throughout their last album Astoria.

 

The Killing Kind

The last song on a Mariana Trench album is always very similar to a grand finale of a musical and this album is no different. This album was based around the theme of house is haunted and this song brings all of the strands of story together. It goes through different elements musically and lyrically and is like an adventure start to end. The different use of instruments really makes this song extraordinary. Another thing I love about this song is that if you are a fan of Marianas Trench you can hear elements of old theme albums and it ties them all together.

It feels like it is sort of ending a huge chapter in the legacy and taking them to the next step – sort of like a film series or a book series like Harry Potter. This finale song sort of feels like the Half Blood Prince (or The ending of Empire Strikes Back) metaphorically as it ties up loose ends whilst also changing the dynamics of what is to come and that there is a new adventure that is about to happen


What’s The Verdict?

This album is a very different sound to the other ones that came before it. Online, fans are saying that the older ones are better but I completely disagree.

I personally find it is hard to compare one Marianas Trench album to another as they are so different in their themes and styles – that’s like trying to put all Tom Hanks films into the same box, it doesn’t work.

Personally for me, I enjoyed this album I liked the fact it was so different From  Astoria and actually preferred it. I think as a whole the album is very creative and that the music on it has been developed and structured really well.

Even though it is a really good album and one that I reccomend listening to and buying, I feel nothing will ever come close to Ever After as that album is in a league of its own but this is a damn close try.

Rating: 8.5/10

 

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