Heaters Suspended Youth
7.8 out of 10
The Heaters latest album “Suspended Youth” from Beyond Beyond Is Beyond Records, released Nov. 2nd 2018. The fourth full-length from the Michigan based band and the second with their current line-up. The Heaters dive into shoegaze rock with plenty of trendy synth. Suspended Youth fits the latest trends in the psych / contemporary shoegaze with spacious arrangements, rich guitar swells, ambient echoes, and steady rhythmic drum and bass cementing a danceable groove. The music swirls into the atmosphere making crystalline sonic clouds. It sounds like The Heaters have grown into a sound which is comfortable and creatively unique, they found their home base.
Heaters started as a 3 part psyched-out garage rock band then slowly evolved over the course of 3 albums into the spacious arrangements and melodic clarity heard on Suspended Youth. The guitar, synth, and tonal arrangements remain contemporary with late 80’s sound design flavoring. The smooth echoing guitars stay clear and present, never distorted. This dramatically contrasts their previous efforts which always included fuzz tones that go beyond the comfort zone. Now gone these ripping arrangements are replaced with melodic runs, swirling ambience, and synth. The spacious clean arrangements move them outside garage rock into shoegaze and electronic rock. This change was solidified with the departure of founding guitarist Andrew Tamlyn who is now focused the new band Fyrrh ( https://fyrrh.bandcamp.com/releases). Tamyln was replaced with Montreal based guitarist Ryan Hagan and Ben Taber.
The Heaters have indistinguishable vocals with long held notes dripping in reverb and cavernous echos. This trend continues on Suspended Youth but with more clarity and precision on the attack and drawing out of the phrases. At times this album has powerful alternative indie rock appeal largely due to the interaction of the vocals, effect laden guitars, and synth.
This album gets a 7.8 out of 10. The heaters are and have been a great band since the first release up to the present. Suspended Youth closes the door on lo-fi garage rock and opens up to a vast expanse that is less definable. The music is strongly original and creative with the best production of any heaters album. The layers of instrumentation are well performed, clear and never muddy, the instruments are balanced and interact with the whole of the song perfectly. The band has grown from 3 to 4 members but manages to create sophisticated arrangements where no one is overstated or overlapping to create dissonance. It receives a 7.8 out of 10 because the songs are all very balanced nothing stands out as a climax and none of the individual songs are highly memorable, each one is as interesting and dynamic as the others. The Heaters cannot be filed into any specific genre. They are crossing defined musical boarders developed by their contemporaries to land in a self-created musical landscape. The sense of “coming home” in their sound will get this band more attention than the previous releases (we will see, the album has not been released yet!!). Overall, Great album, Great band!!!
Heaters Suspended Youth