As a result of the collaboration between Prog Sphere Promotions and the Dutch alternative melancholic rock / electronic outfit Fourteen Twentysix, we at Prog Sphere have received an exclusive 4-track sampler of the band’s upcoming, as-yet-untitled album due to be released in January 2012.
First of all, an interesting fact about this record is that it features Mick Moss of Antimatter as a guest vocalist on one of the tracks, Every Line. We were lucky to have this particular song included among the tracks we recieved.
Since there is no marked order in the track listing, I will kick off with Every Line. The guys made a great choice by having Mick Moss do the vocal duties on the song, as both Mick and Fourteen Twentysix successfully deal with the melancholic side of alternative/dark rock. The electronic threads which build up the track’s flow, mix with Mick’s distinctive vocal style to bring to mind the likes of Blackfield, Steven Wilson, The Pineapple Thief and perhaps Lunatic Soul and Antimatter.
For a Second – I would describe this one as atmospheric electro-post-rock with highly developed motorik repetitiveness in its structure. Little Diamonds flirts with Chris Isaac‘s sense for melody, Coldplay and Blackfield, as well as the bits of the Explosions in the Sky‘s variant of post-rock combined with Autechre-like electronic experimentations. For that reasons, this exclusive Prog Sphere sampler is showing signs of what the album could turn. And that is one of the highlights of 2012.
But we are not done yet. Fall From Gravity is certainly the most melancholic track on this preview-sampler, but at the same time it comes up with a certain grooviness, establishing an equillibrium in its structure by surrendering to that same melancholy. Personally, I would pick this one as my favorite, but it’s too early to separate any songs, as the full-length is going to be made of 16 tracks in total. This means that Fourteen Twentysix is going to serve a long running monster which the fans of this kind of expression will be strongly enjoy. I really have to praise the work of Mark Smith, the sound engineer from Tilburg / The Netherlands who, judging by these four tracks, did a masterfully job behind the mixing pult. In this modern era, when – production wise – most of the albums sounds pretty similar, Fourteen Twentysix stands out in another crucial segment of an achievement, confirming that so much effort and energy have been invested in something what will in 2012 be described as “highly recommended”, by many critics.
The direction 1426 takes with this new material in comparison with their Songs to Forget EP and their album Lighttown Closure shows a tendency toward deepening and expanding their sound, experimenting and bringing some new ingredients toward the final product. This appears to be managed through synths and drum/percussive patterns, through which the experimentation is significantly improved compared to Lighttown Closure. Emphasizing this element of freedom in their musicianship is a key factor which separates these four tracks and I believe the rest of the material from anything previously recorded, but with clarity that this is Fourteen Twentysix, a band who recorded Songs to Forget and Lighttown Closure.
Before the album is released in its entirety, the band will put a single for free download as an announcement and a showcase for what can be expected. Besides, if there are some nice people willing to help the band and make a donation, check www.fourteentwentysix.com for more info and what you get in return for your help.
This group is an example of the idea that maturity is knowing what you mean to create. After a very promising start in the vein of their Songs to Forget EP and their groundbreaking debut Lighttown Closure, Fourteen Twentysix are more than ready to become a the heralds of another wave of music history.
Until that happens, stay tuned for more news by checking the band’s website, as well as the band’s Bandcamp profile where you can download their previously recorded material totally for free. Find the links below.