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Album Review: Rooftops - A Forest of Polarity

If Sigur Ros were brought up on math rock, they'd sound like Rooftops. The intricate guitars utilised on 'A Forest of Polarity perfectly compliment its majestic strings, an element to their sound which wouldn't sound out of place on a Sigur Ros album. It's this winning formula which makes the opening tracks so compelling; 'I Fast Early' and 'Raft Easily' manage to portray passion, whilst remaining technically outstanding. It sounds fresh and exciting.

As the album progresses, Rooftops prove that they have an abundance of clever ideas. Unfortuntately, more often than not these ideas fail to flourish into actual songs, making the album sound slightly disjointed and under-developed near the end. This is not helped by the choice to use vocals on only two of the ten tracks. This may add a new dimension to the music, but they sound out of place on what is naturally an instrumental album.

However, all is forgiven by the time 10 minute epic 'Sea Frailty' closes the album. The subtle interplay between the guitar and brass, makes the song an incredibley mature piece of music through its soothing acoustics and soaring crecendo of a finale. It ends the album on a high through being a reminder of the more memorable and well executed moments of 'A Forest of Polarity', as they are all are echoed perfectly in 'Sea Frailty'.

Despite the absence of a real sense of union among the tracks, partly as a result of its sproadic vocals, 'A Forest of Polarity' is a sterling effort from a band who have clearly honed a sound. Even if it does sound a bit like Minus the Bear.


'A Forest of Polarity' by Rooftops is released on Clickpop/Topshelf on May 18th.

Rooftops Official Website
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Alex Howick

Alter The Press!