Pretensiously or not, I’m claiming that The Netherlands’ Fourteen Twentysix is one of the most progressing and in a way innovative bands in years I had an opportunity to listen to and work with. Although in the beginning 1426 was based around one-man band concept, during the years Chris van der Linden gathered a serious group of musicians and ever since then the band has produced three releases: Songs to Forget EP (2008), Lighttown Closure (2010) and a brand new recording named In Halflight Our Soul Glows (which comes as a collaborative work from the full line-up).
Comparing to everything what has been done before with Songs to Forget and Lighttown Closure, the new album is a giant step forward for the band’s resumme. To continue with comparisons, LC was way too darker release than IHOSG, with lesser eclectic factor. On the other side, In Halflight Our Soul Glows is more of an album structure with plenty of different elements circling through the flow.
Having considered the album’s main ingredients which come in the ways of ambitionalism, progressiveness and its (ever) growth – we face with a gainful trifecta. This record’s pace is easy and fatigueless, it’s buying you impreceptibly from the opener Echo down to Funeral Fire. The album is comprised of 15 numbers from which 6 of them are no longer than 2 minutes mark. Electronica, dark ambient, alternative, post and indie sounds built upon synthpop beat are the factors that enter the final mix.
Chris’ vocals are the perfect match with the overall image, soothing and laid-back, topping the every segment of the instrumental work. Although Chris is the main vocalist, Tom van Neunen takes the baton on few numbers as a lead singer. But that’s not all when speaking of vocals. Mick Moss of Antimatter provides his recognizable voice on Every Line, the track that was chosen as the band’s first single off the album.
If by some chance I would not have known the story and a development path of IHOSG, I could doubtless say that this selection of songs is the music from a motion picture. It really gives away that feeling by its audio-visual dynamics. Calm and intense, shallow and deep, In Halflight Our Soul Glows is composed under the huge reliance of the term contrast. Could you bear all the contrast a burden of time carries?
2. Summer Snow
4. For A Second
8. Fall From Gravity
9. Every Line ft. Mick Moss (Antimatter)
11. Little Diamonds
13. The Crossing
15. Funeral Fire
* Chris van der Linden – vocals, guitar
* Tom van Nuenen – vocals, guitars, keyboards
* Jelle Goossens – guitars, keyboards
* Martijn Jorissen – bass, keyboards
* Jeroen Dirrix – drums, keyboards