At The Grove - “Infinity” ~ A post-rock marvel, vast and impressive in its scope!
I’ve never been especially partial to instrumental rock or post-rock. Growing up listening to punk, pop-punk, post-hardcore, and all those other 2000s genres, a song with that type of instrumentation just feels somehow incomplete to me without a high-tenor vocalist belting his (and yes, usually his) heart out.
That being said, German post-rock artist At The Grove has delivered something I found distinctly enjoyable with his album Infinity. While my ear instinctively wants to hear vocals over many of these songs, his sense of melody and arrangement more than makes up for the lack thereof across much of the record. The album opener “The Call” has more than enough melody going on in the guitar parts to maintain interest throughout the song, and the ambient meditation of “Lost Soul” manages to be especially compelling, relaxing, and pointedly haunting without needing a single word sung over it.
Another highlight for me was “Days Of Solitude,” another slow burn reminiscent of the instrumental post-rock soundscapes painted by bands like Explosions In The Sky. A similar vibe persists on the following track, “Dreamland,” which to my taste is very listenable.
In my opinion, it really is on the slower tracks where At The Grove’s post-rock sensibility shines. “In Tears Of Grief” is dominated by a meandering lead guitar line that could just about bring the right listener to, well, tears. “Awakening” was my personal favorite song on the record, a slow, melancholy piece that I’m certain would do well as a sync placement for a television show. “Awakening” in particular encapsulates the best of what I like about post-rock; where some of the songs on this album seem to just be instrumentals that someone could easily sing over, this one is definitively an instrumental piece from end to end.
The album closer is “The Call: Conclusion,” a heavily distorted, reverb-drenched dirge that ends with a poignant vocal sample.
In terms of production, At The Grove has done a magnificent job with this record. The parts are played with precision, arranged with care, and finished with a definite commercial sheen. That all of this is executed by one man makes the effort that much more impressive.
Listeners who enjoy post-rock will definitely not find any fault with Infinity, particularly the standout tracks I highlighted. This album deserves to find its way onto playlists alongside cited influences Russian Circles and Long Distance Calling, or the aforementioned Explosions In The Sky. It may not be my personal taste, but as a dispassionate music reviewer I have to give credit where credit is due: Infinity is a very well-executed album, and At The Grove should be proud of what he’s accomplished with it.
Listen to "Dreamland" on Spotify here -
You can check out At the Grove’s instagram profile here:
A brilliant addition to the repertoire -