Spielbergs: This is Not the End (By the Time It Gets Dark) Review | Under the Radar - Music Magazine
Saturday, July 11th, 2020  


This is Not the End

By the Time It Gets Dark

Jan 30, 2019 Web Exclusive Bookmark and Share

Spielbergs, Norway's most recent spectacular rock export, burst onto the scene in 2018 with Distant Star, a debut EP so mature, muscular, and fullequal parts bombast and vivacitythat it seemed almost obscene for it to be a debut. And yet Distant Star was, indeed a debut, one that left fans salivating for what was to come.

With This Is Not the End, the band's first full-length, Spielbergs have delivered on the promise of that debut, and then some. This is arguably the first utterly crucial rock album of 2019. More polished than the EP, but losing none of the punch that made it so special, this is a strikingly consistent collection of melodic rock songs, borrowing from the palette of '90s hard rock but adding a decidedly contemporary sheen. The longer form making an album provides offers the band ample opportunity to show a perhaps surprising level of versatility too. Something they do with aplomb. This only makes the album feel more special.

The album begins with the kind of uncompromising heaviness so well loved by fans of Distant Star. Single and album opener "5 On It" has a stratospheric and stadium-ready chorus the likes of which is rarely heard in contemporary rock. The EP's title track, "Distant Star," reappears as track 2, while "NFL" (which stands for "Not For Long") chugs and rolls along beautifully, a song the band's compatriots Motorpsycho would be delighted with.

It's on track 5, "Familiar," that some of that extra versatility really comes into view for the first time. This is a mini symphony packed into just under six minutes. It twists and turns, full of menace, yet with an undercurrent of real beauty.

"You All Look Like Giants" and "Bad Friend" are sure to get concert halls and festival fields jumping through the rest of the year and so it comes as something of a jarring surprise that they're followed by the lilting instrumental "McDonald's (Please Don't Fuck Up My Order)" and "Sleeper," both of which sound like they could come from an entirely different band. The album's tour de force single "4AM" returns things to normality next, a truly great song on an album of truly great songs.

At 12 tracks, the record feels a touch bloated, which is this reviewer scraping the barrel desperately seeking a criticism so as not to be accused of simply writing a press release about the album. You'd be missing out if you chose to ignore this release. (www.facebook.com/spielbergs)

Author rating: 8/10

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Average reader rating: 10/10


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