Review: Eyelids New Album Find Eyes Wide Open

Eyelids/A Colossal Waste of Light/Jealous Butcher Records 
3.5 out of five stars

Four albums on, the band that was touted as a supergroup in waiting can now truly lay claim to that distinction, courtesy of newly-recruited bass player Victor Krummenacher of Camper Van Beethoven and Monks of Doom fame, and the fact the new album finds Peter Buck sitting behind the boards. Likewise, given Eyelid’s retro-fueled instincts and an occasional sweep of psychedelia, there’s ample reason to suggest this foursome has ample cause for laying claim to an elevated standing.

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That’s not to say they tend to go over the top. “Crawling Off Your Pages,” the rousing rocker that opens the album, offers an auspicious intro, one that’s quickly augmented by the cheery follow-up, “Swinging in the Circus.” Mostly though, the album consists of mood-shifting mid-tempo melodies, with songs such as “That’s Not Real At All,” “They Said So,” “I Can’t Be Told,” and “Everything That I See” coming across with a driven determination, all propelled by a consistently steady stride. There’s a combination of dense delirium and vibrant virtuosity distilled in each of these efforts, a sound that’s both melodic and mesmerizing all at the same time. To some, it may bring reminders of such cosmic cavaliers as The Church and Modern English given the atmospheric ambiance that’s poured into almost every offering.

Harmony and happenstance are given equal emphasis, making the music all the more compelling. And while certain songs—“Runaway, Yeah,” “Misses,” “The Snowier Band,” and the title track in particular—seem to dig deeper into sincerity and sentiment, the overall exuberance isn’t diminished in the slightest.

Ultimately, A Colossal Waste of Light takes Eyelids several steps further in terms of heft and gravitas, sharing the sense that they need not rely on hype or headlines to garner the attention they so decidedly deserve at this juncture. Its title aside, there’s no waste to be found here, but rather the sound of a band that’s clearly come into its own.

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