Animals as Leaders, Weightless
Animals as Leaders has really created something here that is hard to write about. The first thing that you need to know, perhaps, is that these songs are instrumental. Great, you think, this will be very easy to write about, since you don’t have a vocalist to love or hate, and you don’t have to compare or judge the lyrics in some way like you’re a poet. But oh, how wrong you’d be. The lack of vocals just seems to make the musical side of things try that much harder.
At first listen, the songs on Weightless come off as being somewhat heavy, with breakdowns and chords that you could see another band playing to a moshpit full of tattooed and half-naked metalheads. At the same time, it has that “big rock” feel that you’d almost expect from a hair-metal band; kind of guitar-driven metal, if you will. But I think the most truthful thing that can be said is that it sounds a lot like the soundtrack to a video game from the 1980s or 1990s. (A really rocking video game, mind you.)
Techno gets mixed in with the rock at times, and the album overall has some very heavy parts to it (see: “Do Not Go Gently”), but my best comparison is that this in some twisted way makes me think of a combination of Evergreen Terrace, Dokken, and Trans Siberian Orchestra. Definitely worth listening and rocking out to as much as possible — not just background filler.