The Invisible World – Color / Echo
Few bands emerging on the alternative rock scene in recent years can claim even half the inventiveness of The Invisible World. These long time veterans of the indie music scene have logged time in earlier outfits that, in light of their new powerful formation, seem like finishing schools of sorts for the real deal to come. Make no mistake – The Invisible World is a musical force to be reckoned with. The six cuts on their second EP release, Color / Echo, aren’t merely rough and tumble guitar battles with just enough melody to retain the listener’s interest. Instead, they glitter with an assortment of melodies, electric and otherwise, while still retaining distinctive rock and roll power. They are likewise committed musicians who never deliver a single half-hearted note on Color / Echo. Each of the half dozen songs are brimming over with life, sometimes wild-eyed with passion, others measured and considered.
The wild-eyed passion and consideration merge at times. One example is the EP’s opening song and title track. The Invisible World construct a dense sonic landscape for their metaphysical lyrical meditations and vocalist Jesse Collins successfully pits his voice against the dramatic musical setting without ever ceding an inch of ground. The song ends unexpectedly, but quite effectively, with a brief acoustic guitar finish. The introduction of low-fi instruments primes listeners for the AOR gallop of “Bellamy”. It is refreshing to hear a band so capable of turning on a stylistic dime and offering listeners different, but equally compelling material. Collins adapts his voice appropriately with a performance that makes tremendous use of his talents for melody. They veer back towards the other end of the scale on the subsequent song, “The Way”. The Invisible World, once again, summon up a tornado of white hot guitars and a muscular rhythm section performance that, arguably, creates the EP’s best pure groove. This isn’t a band relying on the traditional slightly behind beat swing of classic rock acts. They write from a much more recent frame of reference, but there are a number of moments on Color / Echo who they show a clear penchant for adopting some of those same musical poses.
“Brick by Brick” is another of the EP’s more memorable achievements. The band’s fearlessness in contrasting the earlier material with this lean, exclusively acoustic piece is admirable, but they pull it off because it demonstrates the inherent quality of the band’s songwriting. Everything has its place and, like a great novelist or short story writer, every note is on trial for its life. The result is an insightful and deeply moving performance. The EP ends with the cracking “Oughta Know”, a firm and conclusive reminder that the band’s first principles remain founded on their ability to manifest intense physicality in the music while serving higher ends. There’s a great deal of melodic strength pushing the final song along, but it conveyed with power and more than a little attitude. Intelligence and attitude are equally shown throughout these songs and it makes the release on of 2016’s best.
9 out of 10 stars.