September 9, 2016 Twin Atlantic – GLA (Album Review)
With motivation driving through the roof and a passion like no other, there are just some bands that can truly say they love what they do; as for Glasgow, Scotland’s Twin Atlantic, this is one hundred percent true. Starting out just like any other, members Sam McTrusty (vocals and guitar), Barry McKenna (guitar), Ross McNae (bass), and Craig Kneale (percussion) found themselves playing in small local bands before their lives fully aligned with the formation of Twin Atlantic. Already gaining local, as well as internationally recognition, the band was able to support talents such as Circa Survive and MewithoutYou before they publicly released any of their own music. Taking a huge leap of courage and ultimately progressing as a group, this was later followed by 2008’s A Guidance from Colour, their debut EP.
With a solid running start, Twin Atlantic gives gratitude to their two inspirations, David Bowie and, of course, their hometown. Growing their confidence even stronger and landing support from one of the biggest European Rock magazines – Kerrang! – the guys were at an all time high with recognition, and were definitely blooming in their careers. As if releasing successful music and gaining world-wide acknowledgement was not enough, Twin Atlantic was personally invited by Jimmy Chamberlin to open for The Smashing Pumpkins; supporting some other great bands in the meantime (Blink-182, Say Anything, The Matches), alongside playing a wide range of festivals, all while branching out their name.
Twin Atlantic went on to gain even greater commercial success – featured on BBC Radio 1 – release a plethora of music, and play a surplus of shows; more than they have ever before. Through playing some insane live gigs, to even winning awards for their incredibly talented music, Twin Atlantic has come a long way in such a short amount of time to the release of their fourth full-length album, GLA, released September 9th, and has given fans everything they wanted and even more.
This sharp, jam-packed album kicks off with an exciting piece, looking to grasp the attention all of those around. Completely outside of the box, “Gold Elephant: Cherry Alligator,” is a wholly unique venture to the start of GLA. Sounding almost like nothing before, this track will send listeners into a fury of excitement only bring them to the rest of the album. Thoroughly rad right from the start, “No Sleep” is beyond catchy and a sure-to-be favorite. With riffs that will seep into one’s brain and lyrics that are completely relatable, GLA is already proving itself to be an album of the year. Continuing on with “You Are The Devil,” this song is just as memorable, highlighting vocals brought to us by McTrusty, alongside great harmonization and backup layer, all coming together with out-of-this-world instrumentation.
Slightly different than the tracks before, “Overthinking” stands out to no end. Standing its own ground, this track showcases vocals in a way that has not been heard before. Now truly hearing McTrusty’s distinguished voice, listeners will be totally hooked on Twin Atlantic’s definitive jams. Moving on with new vibes, “Ex El” is a track that speaks for itself. Raw passion and energy, this song is full of emotion and honesty; another favorite off of the album, listeners are sure to remember this one. If there is one attribute that stands out among the rest, it would have to be instrumentation, and “Valhalla” is a song that perfectly proves this. With a groove that defies their non-existent limits, Twin Atlantic has surely outdone themselves.
Reaching the halfway point of GLA, with still no disappointment in ears reach, “I Am Alive” kicks in next. Upbeat and distinctive, this song just gets better with each replay. Jumping to softer vibes, “Whispers” is a tad slower with a melancholic side, touching on death; only jumping to an even more mellow piece, “A Scar To Hide.” Slightly quieter than any other track, this song is gentle and shoes the more vulnerable side of Twin Atlantic.
Growing back to an upbeat pace, “Missing Link” is a fun and energetic song. Completely textured, this song is nothing but noticeable. Possibly the best off of GLA, “The Chaser” is danceable, fresh, and unpredictable. Raising the bar for any music that has yet to come, this piece is downright satisfying. Closing in on the end of the album, “Mothertongue” is an interesting way to finish a brilliant record. With a steady guitar riff and a slowed down tempo, featuring ragingly true vocals, listeners will just fall in love with Twin Atlantic.
Ambition completely pays off when one can look at, or in this case, listen to a piece of art they created and be surreally content. Through countless hours of writing, recording, and dedication, any listener will be sure to hear the raw passion that went into every track. Utterly sharp and electric, CrypticRock gives Twin Atlantic’s GLA 4 out of 5 stars.