senzafine is a Montreal, QC based instrumental rock band here with their third album, Lost Apes. This three-piece brings elements of progressive and post-rock together to create a truly cohesive and, at times, theatrical album. If any of that sounds interesting to you, slap on some headphones and get lost for half an hour, and then come to finish reading.
Lost Apes begins with “Night Terrors,” a song that sounds like something straight out of a science fiction movie. The marching beat and ominous guitar kick the song off and immediately pulled me in. The instrumental overdubs and fuzzed out basslines create, forgive the cliché, a real wall of sound. Next up is the song “Tastes Like Burning” which, unlike “Night Terrors,” is a lot more of a slow burn. senzafine build layers of delayed guitar over top of an almost hypnotic drum and bass passage and a pitch-shifted sample of John F. Kennedy’s 1961 “President and the Press” speech.
I really couldn’t pick a favourite track because I am torn between “Tastes Like Burning” and, the third track on Lost Apes, “The Have-Nots/North Atlantic Drift.” Both songs are fairly slow building pieces of music, but the latter has a lot more variety as far as instruments go, featuring keyboards and violins throughout. “The Have-Nots/North Atlantic Drift” might take the top spot for me just for its ending. After some pretty over-the-top shimmering reverb guitar, the song slowly fades out into nothing and brings the whole thing full circle.
The song “Lost Apes,” or “Lost Tapes” according to Bandcamp, is the only gripe I had with the album. The reverse delay that starts off the song is captivating throughout, and the keyboard lines that play underneath the guitar solo adds a nice sense of depth. The solo itself, however, was too shreddy for my taste and felt a bit self-indulgent. The ending of “Lost Apes” is interesting enough, with some cool droning noises around the seven-minute mark, but it felt abrupt. senzafine proved on the previous two tracks that they could stick a landing but rushed into it this time around when I feel the album could have ended more gracefully.
Aside from the few nitpicky problems I had with it, Lost Apes was a great album. senzafine cover a lot of sonic ground without any sections feeling slapped together or out of place. The drums, bass, guitar, and overdubbed instruments throughout Lost Apes play off one another impeccably and give you something different to pick up on during repeat listens. If you’re a fan of progressive or post-rock, I think you’ll find something to enjoy about this album.
Written by Justin Bruce
*edited by Danielle Kenedy