Rosetta – Quintessential Ephemera

It seems that every time a band releases a new record, they define it as their crowning achievement. This is to be understood, however, because any band that did not refer to their newest work, the work of their current state of mind, as their best, they would be living off the coattails of their past. In many cases, however, those claims are unsubstantiated, because by the time established bands release three or four records, the fans and media alike have picked their favorite and stuck with it. For Rosetta, the challenge was simple: utilize their new guitarist and fifth member to the fullest potential to create their best album yet. While the former would be no challenge, the latter seems to be the biggest struggle. Now that the record is complete, there are definitely a few things we can say about it that will surely excite every Rosetta fan, because this album is an absolute beauty.

As the band described it in our Visual Update, this album would be their “lighter” album, fit to suit summertime and be a lot brighter than their other releases, particularly their last album. The Anaesthete was a great release, but as the fans and the band will agree, it was a very dark record that was veiled in sorrow and strife, which could make the emotional impact of listening to the record a very heavy one. Quintessential Ephemera was designed to be a lighter album, and the band made a very conscious effort to keep it that way. While the album may still sound dark to some, there are many parts that sound as if they’re collaborating with sleepmakeswaves, and that’s definitely a good thing. The album has many more open moments, utilizing the addition of a second guitar to explore some really cool lead ideas throughout the record, which helps give it a lighter tone than its predecessors.

On the subject of new additions, this record uses something new the band have only really dabbled with in the past in the clean vocals. While it may frighten some, they’re magnificent on this album. Placed in the right spot, the vocals soar over the wall of guitar, bass, and drum noise to create this very atmospheric sound, which could be likened to a band like Alcest at times. Comparisons aside, the band really explored new territory in order to deliver a different listening experience for the audience, and it turned out to be a very smart decision on their part. The clean vocals are a welcome addition and something that the band could hopefully utilize in the future with more ambient noise tracks with haunting clean vocals over them.

Now the album’s title comes into consideration. While quintessential is something that is ideal, the word ephemera means something that is supposed to only have had a short lifespan, and something that is only expected to have short term popularity. This title ties a lot back into the record. The new album is their best one to date, surpassing even the mighty A Determinism Of Morality, but at the very end, it does feel very ephemeral in the sense that it’s over fairly quickly. Whether or not this is a bad thing or not is up to the listener’s individual discretion, but at this point, it doesn’t seem to be a problem. It adds to the experience, because the songs are so accessible that is makes it very simple to cycle through the record two or three times in a row without growing tired of the same songs. With each passing listen, a new element will be discovered, and with the run time at just under an hour, it makes it a very good listen no matter where you are.

Rosetta are a band that’s not afraid to take chances. They hired a new guitarist, went to use more clean vocals, and set out to make a “lighter” album than ever before. The band has succeeded in all facets and will now be able to take these songs on the road to play for people who want to hear them. And after listening to the album, why wouldn’t anyone see them? This album will become one of the genre’s best over time, and the band will continue to add to their legacy by having such an awesome piece of work out for sale. While it doesn’t reinvent the wheel, it opens a new door for the band, and delivers great songs and quality production in spades.

Rosetta – Quintessential Ephemera gets…

4/5

-SS

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