Artist: Monks of Mellonwah
Album: Sky & The Dark Night EP
Genre: Rock, Alternative
For fans of: Incubus, Hans Zimmer, Band of Skulls
Less than two months ago, I reviewed Monks Of Mellonwah‘s second EP, Neurogenesis, where I stated, “Although it’s not necessarily the next best thing, the Monks show promise with Neurogenesis but they have a lot of evolving to do on future efforts if they want to stay relevant in rock.” I’m not going to say that they read my review and took my advice, but Sydney, Australia’s Monks Of Mellonwah certainly got their evolution on with their forthcoming EP, Sky & The Dark Night.
With Sky & The Dark Night, the Monks have taken their radio-friendly rock sound and melded it with massive orchestral arrangements composed by guitarist Joseph de la Hoyde. These new string quartet-like blends ring reminiscent of something found on a motion picture score. I imagine it flowing well with scenes in, coincidentally enough, The Dark Knight Rises or any dramatic action film of its ilk. Ultimately, I believe Monks Of Mellonwah have taken a huge leap in the right direction.
While Sky & The Dark Night may only reach 17 minutes in length, it’s a hearty helping of dramatic rock that should tide you over until the band’s next effort. The release opens with “Part 1 – Breakout” and sets up the tone beautifully. It’s intriguing and ominous with snare hits and an intense build that makes you feel something larger is coming. After two minutes, the track fades into “Part 2 – Control” which of the three main parts, is the only to contain the actual rock vibes found on their previous efforts. This track definitely sounds like something that would be found on Neurogenesis apart from the fact that it has also had the orchestral treatment which brings it into a whole new light. Around the 1:47 mark, we find ourselves face to face with some serious soloing and shreddage from guitarist Joe de la Hoyde. While the vocals and lyrics may be a tad repetitive, the track doesn’t stretch long enough for them to become annoying and are saved by the distraction of instrumentation from all involved.
“Part 3 – Condition” is my personal favorite and a real highlight. Initially building slowly with baleful and ethereal, ambient soundscapes then meeting up with heavy-hitting snare, fast paced riffage and electronic house beats, “Part 3 – Control” may sound like an incredibly odd combination but the Monks make it work and it’s a hell of a fun listen.
The fourth track is a “full trilogy mix” which as you can imagine, is the three previous tracks mixed together into one 8-minute track. I thought this was slightly redundant when originally looking at the track list but when listening through, I didn’t mind hearing them again as a whole and I actually enjoyed it more so as one large track as opposed to three separate ones.
I was very pleased to listen through this EP after having just heard their previous one recently. I think Monks Of Mellonwah may have found a sound that certainly fits their talents and gives them a bit more of an original edge over their peers.
Review written by: Brian Lion – Follow him on Twitter