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Review: 'Abel Raise the Cain'
'For Strangers Only'   

-  Genre: 'Indie' -  Release Date: '31st March 2017'

Our Rating:
After a clutch of singles more than deserving of the ‘epic’ descriptor (two of which previously reviewed here on W&H), Abel Raise the Cain finally unveil their debut album.

Said singles, ‘Black Swans’ and ‘Million Dollar Night’ feature on here, and while they set the expectation for an album that’s magnificently produced and hugely ambitious is terms of its cinematic sound, they also indicated that ARC would be a band who liked to play safe in terms of the songwriting. In this respect, ‘For Strangers Only’ may present few surprises, and still aligns the band with influences like Sigur Ros and Arcade Fire, but does reveal a developing range.

‘We’ll Never Know’ is a six-minute string-soaked emotionally-rich epic, with rolling drums and all the cinematic atmosphere you could possibly hope to squeeze in. The intro and outro are augmented with blurred samples, swathed in reverb which serve to conjure a certain discomfort.

‘Dark Side of the Street’ has hints of more recent Twilight Sad with a dash of Depeche Mode in their poppier moments – and indeed, the band’s own preferred touchstones which include Editors are also clearly in evidence. Meanwhile, ‘Hideaway’ and ‘Every Rise’ – the last two tracks on the album – stretch out well beyond the six-minute mark and the radio-friendly spectrum to explore slow-building, slow-burning territories.

  author: Christopher Nosnibor

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Abel Raise the Cain - For Strangers Only