Shield Your Eyes reveal their fourth volume
The brilliant Shield Your Eyes have announced Volume 4, their latest album to be released by Function Records on 17th October. Find out more about the album and tour dates below:
“Volume Four is the most recent album by Shield Your Eyes; the UK's most commonly misunderstood and ill represented underground band; lumped into an imagined post-hardcore and math-rock 'scene' that bears little relation to their sonic horizon; Shield Your Eyes' roots are in a much more organic and native soil. This is no better demonstrated than with their latest offering that successfully shakes off any remnants of USA noise-rock mimesis instead allowing their classic rock and progressive blues influences shine through.
In the vein of the great power trios of the 60's and 70's such as Taste and early-Thin Lizzy, through Mahavishnu Orchestra and Black Sabbath, and taking only the prime cuts of contemporary underground noise-nicks such as Hella, touring partners Pneu and the Warp records output, Shield 'Em strip rock music back to its basics; inventive song writing, astonishing musicianship and plenty of passion in amongst the boogie.
On this record the songs have been left as open structures to allow room for the extended outros and spontaneous jamming that has made SYE such a legendary live experience. Likewise the recording has taken place in an off-season hotel on Jersey with their sometimes bassist Dan Pedersen at the helm as engineer and producer. The roomy and vintage sound as well as the unconventionally relaxed surroundings in which the recording was made manifest themselves as a record of remarkable sincerity and authenticity.
The album kicks of with Larkspur, a deceptively laid back number that aptly sets the assured and confident tone. Elsewhere tracks like 'Tryna Lean a Ladder Up Against the Wind' demonstrate a grasp of nuanced dynamics that moves beyond the overused clean/quiet verse and loud/noisy breakdowns of much contemporary rock, harking back to a more sensitive and sophisticated era. On 'You Merit High Hopes' the squealing guitar and mind battering drums that characterised previous Eyes-output is swapped for a groove with which to truly appreciate the songwriting. Brno, the penultimate number, is a thumbs-in-belt-loop boogie that gives space for the rhythm section to blast off with drum and bass runs to turn John McLaughlin's band green.
Without doubt this is Shield Your Eyes' finest album to date and with no signs of slowing down their industrious pace of writing and touring it hopefully marks the beginning of a glorious mid-career period. Volume 4 should finally set Shield Your Eyes apart from the skinny-jeaned crowd and shows they are playing a long game that will outlive the momentary trends and fads of the internet age.
Andy Abbott (That Fucking Tank)
UK Tour with PNEU:
12.09.11 - Cowley Club, BRIGHTON
13.09.11 - Gullivers, MANCHESTER
14.09.11 - 1 in 12 Club, BRADFORD. w/Nope
15.09.11 - Old Blue Last, LONDON. w/Model Boat
16.09.11 - Links, FLEET. w/Silent Front
08.10.11 - Triplejump Records Alldayer, Fighting Cocks, KINGSTON w/ KONG