[one_half last=”no”]
Ephraim's House

NBHAP Rating: 3,9/5


[one_half last=”yes”]PLAYFELLOW
Ephraim’s House

Release-Date: 13.11.2015


01. Fears And Cities
02. Our Room
03. Starman From The Starsea
04. Hours And Months
05. Late Walk


Half a decade later

The clocks tick a bit slower in the post-rock microcosm, it seems. Sometimes you even get the impression that time stands still within this specific genre as it never really was about trends and pop musical tendencies but always about the moment and the right emotion, whether it is during live performances or on a record. In many ways it is a timeless experience, pretty much like the new PLAYFELLOW album Ephraim’s House. It actually doesn’t matter that it took the German five-piece half a decade to release a follow-up to 2010’s Carnival Off – this ambitious longplayer could have been also released five, ten or fifteen years ago. There’s a timeless approach to that sort of music and their third studio release won’t fail to please those listeners who are into ambitious rock constructs.

Ambitious right from the start

Although only offering five songs the band from Chemnitz leaves no doubt right from the start that they think big with Ephraim’s House. Fears And Cities opens the LP with an epic build-up over the course of eight minutes. A big guitar wall sets the dramaturgy right as singer Toni Niemeir sings about ‘big silly cities’, only to end up in a big celebration of all instruments in finest SIGUR RÓS tradition. The following Our Room, on the other side, embraces the whole world with a big chorus while surfing along on a wave of guitar riffs. Cinemascope post-rock ideas dominate the first half of Ephraim’s House. Starman From The Starsea unfolds its dreamy tenderness over a duration of ten minutes. Do we have to say more?

Unused potential

Still, PLAYFELLOW are not entirely drowning in laconic hypnosis as Hours And Months provides nervous math rock while Late Walk almost spreads the accelerated wave rock spirit of early-U2. You know, the years prior to The Joshua Tree. Those guys clearly don’t need to hide their abilities and ambitions, that much is for sure. Still, we have to question why this is the case. Yes, life happens and you can’t force a band to release record more often than every four or five years but these guys clearly should. And besides its ambitious songs and complexity a bit more than just five songs would have resulted in an even more fulfilling listening experience. PLAYFELLOW got a lot of unused potential, especially on an international level. It’s long overdue that the world sees that, even if it takes some time. But in the end, time never mattered here, right?

PLAYFELLOW’s third full-length Ephraim’s House delivers a high quality and ambitious mixture of epic post-rock and solid songwriting but ended up being a bit too short to unfold the band’s full potential.