Ira – These Are The Arms 10″

Post-hardcore and Post-rock: what’s next?

On their debut album “The Body and the Soil” (2005) Ira made a point of steering clear of stereotypical musical dress codes. Their sophomore release “Visions of a Landscape” (2009) then saw them discarding their wall-of-sound fetish. With more melodious arrangements and a remarkable vocal presence, the band pulled off a mesmerizing symbiosis of psychedelic space pop and heavy rock.

Their new effort “These Are the Arms“ now proves a flawless hat-trick. Dynamic and fragile, the music echoes the rumble and the noise infatuation of their musical ancestors. Think Neurosis playing Van Pelt songs on Prozac; or Monochrome covering A Perfect Circle. What once was unrelenting aggression now yields to more subtle melodicism. Instead of resorting to yell them, the spoken word artist-turned-vocalist Tobias Hoffmann has the finesse to deliver his poetic lyrics without grandstanding, yet with a lot more emphasis.

Conclusion: On a superficial level you may label the songs on Ira’s third release as indie rock with a pop appeal – if surprisingly subtle and profound, moody and noisy. Or you can call them “hard pop.” But maybe you’d be best advised not to label them at all.


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