Album & Single Reviews

Published on November 20th, 2018 | by Gareth Allen

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All The Best Tapes – Apex Emotion

All The Best Tapes from Stoke in the UK, are a four-piece instrumental band, who have just released their second album ‘Apex Emotion’. Broadly speaking inhabiting the math rock genre, they are so much more musically, and have been described quite fabulously as ‘Thrash Jazz’.

‘Apex Emotion’ musically tells the story of ‘Red Snake’, a world champion racing driver, who after a near fatal accident, and being in cryogenic stasis, awakens 133 years later, into a nightmarish new world.

Opening track ‘Best Wishes’ is framed with some wonderful lilting atmospheric chords, before moving up a gear, to a stunning death metal like riff, that Cannibal Corpse would be proud of. This is punctuated with some elegant soaring guitar soloing, and spacey electronics.

‘Hibernation Sickness’ is driven by the most incredible drumming, all crisp, jazzy and polyrhythmic. Allied with the melodic guitar lines, packed full of emotion, it’s a pretty intoxicating mix!

‘The International Rich Lads Party Anthem’, around the midpoint of the album, while initially exuberant, goes into a more melancholic bass led funk type section, that is somewhat resonant of the legendary A Certain Ratio. The song’s finish communicates through the searing singing guitars, a sense of longing and disappointment. An absolutely standout track.

‘Neucolosseum’ see’s the band show off the full range of their musical reach, with dance and Latin rhythms, conjoining with by turns, frenetic fretboard runs, and blues influenced guitar phrases. A final section meanders from this thrilling musical landscape, into a menacing pot-pourri of electronics. It will sound amazing live!

‘Conscious Breathing’ the final track, contrasts with the breath-taking complexity of what has preceded, with its repeated simple guitar refrain and gentle rhythmic backing.

A superb album then, where All The Best Tapes, take the listener on a hugely rewarding and intriguing musical journey. We can’t wait to see them live.

With many thanks to Conor, the bands manager, who brought All The Best Tapes to our attention.


About the Author

A committed metal head with a love of jazz, soul, and folk. Living in Central Scotland and attending gigs in Edinburgh and Glasgow, with it's really amazing venues. My iconic moment... being invited on stage at the Glasgow Garage, by DevilDriver's Dez Fafara!



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