Film director Quentin Tarantino once said “when you put the right bit of music into a film it’s about the most cinematic thing you can do” well Collapse Under The Empire have gone a different route, they seem to have created an epic soundtrack without a movie in this the first part of their two piece concept album Shoulders & Giants.
Shoulders & Giants the third release by post-rock duo Chris Burda and Martin Grimm is the first part of a gripping and sometimes brutal concept album, the second part Sacrifice and Isolation will be released next year.
It’s easy to see why magazines such as Q and Rock Sound have taken an interest in the progression of Collapse Under The Empire since this album really does grip you from the first track.
That first track is Shoulders which has a fantastic old school video arcade sound to it, a sound that has been made all the more popular by the success of the movies Tron Legacy and Scott Pilgrim. It’s a success that the band takes full advantage of and it’s to their credit as the opening track really does make you lend yourself to the rest of the album.
Collapse Under The Empire also seem to have taken a page out of post-rock compatriots Explosions in the Sky with the track There’s No Sky. The track has a huge sound to it just like Explosions In The Sky have. It’s a vast and explorative sound that really shifts the albums direction and is without a doubt the albums highlight.
From that point on Shoulders & Giants feels like a much better album, as though the band realised what they could and would soon accomplish.
Overall Shoulders & Giants has a very dark tone to it which may leave some a bit cold, it will be interesting to see what the band do with the second part as we are really only getting half the story with this album.
For a band like Collapse Under The Empire it’s hard to see mainstream success but there will be corners of the music industry that will herald this album for the piece of art that it is. And that is what this album simply is, art. Whether if this is the band’s masterpiece we’ve still to find out, but come a year from now and the second part of the project is released a lot more people will have heard the name Collapse Under The Empire.
Words by Matthew Foran