When looking at this album’s artwork, it’s hard to get a read on what this Halifax band is all about. The artwork suggests something industrial, and AQL certainly has an industrial quality to it without a doubt. Although it also incorporates many electronic elements to encapsulate its sound.
“Electronic” is the best adjective for AQL- it’s not strictly danceable nor is it completely ambient. At times the electronics can make the songs of GIGAS sound aggressive- at others, it makes them contemplative, almost quiet.
The opener “City Days” straddles the line between quiet and aggressive. The beats are shimmering, psychedelic and slow-burning, often sounding like technology just about to fail. The vocals in this song (and every other) are barely there, likely using the voice as an added effect with its distorted quality.
“In the Sun,” a six-minute song, fluctuates between soft and aggressive in itself. The song is characterized by quick clips of a girl laughing, and used at the beginning of the song the overall feel is sentimental or wistful. However, at around the halfway mark the song takes on an aggressive tone that reminded me somewhat of those freaky moments in a thriller where someone is tripping out really badly and sees reality distorting around them.
“Brewster” and “Gone Completely” are two songs that actually feel happy. The latter is the slickest song on the EP, with nothing feeling gratuitous or drawn-out.
The EP ends with “Aqualung” which, at a short minute-and-a-half, sounded more like an interlude that might start off a recording.
GIGAS is admirable for its experimenting, and with a bit more work it may find a sound that fits it like a glove.
AQL is available via Bandcamp.
Top Track: “Gone Completely”
Rating: Young Hoot (Decent)