The last two years have been a disappointment for much of the world. Just over ten thousand articles gave away tips to cope, but none of them ever ended being up enough of a pillow to scream into. Well, The Library’s new album Quiet, Please resonates with a great chunk of this emotion. So if you’re short of a vent, you know exactly where to look.
A union of two extremely versatile artists, The Library comprises of musicians Vishal J Singh and Siddharth Basrur. The former roommates and best friends came up with the two-piece act while listening to records and recording music in their apartment, mixing up influences and inventing genres. A rollercoaster ride in its entirety, Quiet, Please is a bold effort to marry the crazy of punk with the complexity of progressive rock. “The Punk element symbolizes the don’t-care-what-others-think in life attitude while the Prog element symbolizes the let-me-think-and-find-a-solution temperament in life. Combined, they symbolize “Freedom” and “Being Forever Young and Alive.”, says Vishal J Singh about the album.
Featuring brazen drums and multi-toned guitars throughout, ‘Glide’ opens the album with an unprecedented yet effective adrenaline rush of post-punk madness. Subtle, but clever chord changes keep the track ever-dynamic, a mere trailer for the rest of the record. The expected repetitiveness from an all-instrumental record is absolved by abrasive punk hues that wash over the piece.
Much to every guitarist’s knowledge, it is tough to avoid a nostalgic outpour with wonderfully sensitive arpeggios. ‘So Keep The Fire Burning, Tammy’ uses this cliche to its advantage, starting out as a somber 2-chord intro, to take on a more complicated disposition. Just when you think you’ve reached the sonic peak of the track, all layers recede, only to join back in, one at a time, to envelope a deceptively feeble synth. Over a stretch of a minute, you’re tossed about helplessly, in an emotional tornado of a prog-punk venture. Having made plenty of space for itself, So Keep The Fire Burning, Tammy shows itself out with a minimal, riff-ridden outro.
Past the intro, what Season 3 presents is a predictable continuation of the angsty, determined spirit that the previous tracks kindle. Loud yet accessible, you’d be surprised at how melodic a noisy riff can be. ‘You’re all sweaty and worn out, but you’re not done yet’ – ‘In The Library’, The Library. Offering a refreshing, human touch amidst all the sound-machine-glory, the song features vocals for the first and last time, a sorry limitation. ‘In The Library’ could hold you together as you spiral into self-made doom, with Siddharth Basrur’s esoteric falsetto and screeching guitars enabling a sweet, sweet demise of reason.
At this point in the tracklist, you might think you’re past all possible elements of surprise. Well, ‘Page No. 69’ proves you grossly wrong. Its delicate expressions could even star in a prog-rock fairy tale. In a gentle yet firm tenor, the track allows you an ounce of optimism – but only for a brief moment. It wouldn’t be a stretch to assume that a hint of warm, yellow sunshine in this album, is a mere time-out.
Cold and with no mercy, ‘The Wonderland in Alice’ plunges us yet again, into a deep, dark trough, sparing us no breath. Aggressive, unapologetic riffs coupled with fast-paced drums steal the show with grace, but the outro holds somewhat of a cacophonic transition, almost like when someone changes the song abruptly without your permission. ‘A Choice Selection’ can be best described as the feeling of cooling down after an intense workout. The predictability of the track comes as a relieving end to the bulky record. No alarms and no surprises, silence quiet, please.
The Library’s vision to hybridize progressive rock and punk is apparent in the result – a complex yet accessible sonic catalog of polished riffs and versatile arrangements. Quiet, Please brings an interesting vision to fruition and stands unmatched in its energy amidst some of this year’s independent releases.
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