Christiansen – Forensics Brothers and Sisters! EP

Christiansen
Forensics Brothers and Sisters! EP

This album’s been out for three months now, but I’m slow in getting to it, and I apologize. For their Revelation debut, this Louisville, Kentucky band puts together six excellent post-hardcore tracks that show off their intensity as well as their sense of melody. Is it emo? Yeah, but it’s still pretty kick-ass!
Perfectly fitting in on the Revelation label, Christiansen combine emo and punk with dashes of hardcore in the way that bands like the Jazz June and Falling Forward did so well. The musicians are surprisingly restrained, and just when you think they’re going to break into something terribly loud an fast, they keep their sense of rhythm and burst into a tight rock assault. The vocals are perfectly decipherable, the guitars strong yet melodic, the rhythm powerful and furious.
The opener, “Jhazz Never Spelled So Good,” is a bit more mid-tempo than other tracks, riding a low bass line and some harsh guitars that make you think the band could break into metal at any point. But “Portable Museums” ups the speed, vocals almost spit at you as the band blasts away under an edgy guitar riff. I’m reminded of bands like Tekluvi on the strong “Let Us Now Die Famous Men,” which has more of a melodic approach. Their best song is “Transistorized Landscapes,” with its edgy guitar work but more restrained pace and cool, moody vocal style. There’s even some cool piano that makes a nice interlude. “Traditional Ghosts” just carries along the same as the other tracks, while “The Era of Murder By Simulation” closes a little more experimental. Off-beat vocals, edgy guitars, and up-tempo rhythms give this one a more off-kilter punk feel, and the repetitive chorus is definitely infectious.
I’ve heard a lot about Christiansen, and they’ve developed a strong following. They’ve found an excellent match with Revelation, perfectly fitting in with the label’s strong group of emotional post-hardcore bands. A little more on the emo side, Christiansen don’t really try anything new, yet they have a lot of power and some strong guitarwork that makes this a fine release.