It Was High Time To


rovi.MR0000418243 9/2/03 Used

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    It Was High Time To 54-40 or Fight/Polk

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Review Text Portland, OR's 31 Knots unveiled their third full-length album in 2003 with the release of the ten-song It Was High Time to Escape on Michigan's 54°40' or Fight! Records. Leading the Northwest wave of prog-pop bands, 31 Knots continued to impressive with the kind of precise guitar chords and steady rhythms found on the opening track, "A Half Life in Two Movements." That song seamlessly gives way to the frazzled and charming "Darling, I," which offers a staggeringly restrained sound that seems ready to blow up at any moment, yet doesn't. Joe Haege leads the way on guitar and vocals, while bassist Jay Winebrenner and drummers Joe Kelly and Jay Pellicci combine to form one of the more irreverent rhythm sections in indie rock. Kelly left the band soon after the recording of four of the album's songs in 2002 and was replaced by Pellicci, who took over drumming duties for the March 2003 sessions, which completed the disc. Haege is center stage throughout, setting up the disc's highlight reel with unconventional guitar chords, unwaveringly fiery vocals, and continuously challenging lyrics on songs like "No Sound," "We Still Have Legs," and "At Peace." "Without Wine" slows down the album's pace with a reflective acoustic bass dancing with Haege's narrative metaphors. A mesmerizing bassline leads into the entrancing "Played Out for Punchlines," while the unsettling "Matters from Ashes" mixes tender tones and vocals with a disconcerting electronic backdrop. Pushing the envelope of the math rock sound throughout, the band's brash post-hardcore impresses most of all because if its seeming lack of obvious influences. Taking cues from a large pool of bands on It Was High Time to Escape, 31 Knots paints a sound with a wide brush and an array of colors. ~ Stephen Cramer

Track Listing

CD: 1

  1. 1. Half Life in Two Movements - 2:46
  2. 2. Darling, I - 4:09
  3. 3. Gospel According to Efficiency - 4:15
  4. 4. No Sound - 3:53
  5. 5. We Still Have Legs - 6:52
  6. 6. Without Wine - 4:46
  7. 7. That Which Has No Name - 5:56
  8. 8. At Peace - 4:08
  9. 9. Played out for Punchlines - 4:58
  10. 10. Matters from Ashes - 4:17

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