Since their inception in 2005, one thing has held true for post-rock outfit Maybeshewill. The band has balls. While the cataclysmic build-ups of Godspeed You! Black Emperor and sorrow-drenched instrumentation of Sigur Ros seem to exemplify the genre, Maybeshewill has stuck out like a sore thumb; cutting to the chase with an accessible breed of sophistication and edge. The stalwart demeanor on both Not for Want of Trying and Sing the Word Hope in Four-Part Harmony was propelled by the heavily distorted guitars and thundering rhythm section, while the keyboards and occasional orchestration portrayed the group’s ambitious inclinations. What was accumulated from the instrumentation were the sentiments of distress and most formidably anger, most of which pertained to the political nature of the records. In a world where both sides of the political spectrum are far from cooperation and screaming at one another, Maybeshewill’s music has exposed this haunting reality and conveyed an alarming rate of applicability.
In 2011 however, Maybeshewill’s message takes on a much more ambiguous form. Their third record, I Was Here For a Moment, Then I Was Gone is a stride and a half towards something more abstract, majestic, or tranquil even; presenting the release as possibly the band’s tightest work. Gone are the livid voice-overs that were so adamantly used to convey the outfit’s political message, replaced by the budding significance of the keyboards and orchestration. While Sing the Hope in Four-Part Harmony threw the listener into the fire in the opening seconds, I Was Here For a Moment, Then I Was Gone allows the listener to test the waters before delving into the antagonism. The opening track plays a pivotal role in this regard, as the keyboards and orchestration amass the record’s unyielding tension before the searing riffs of “Take This to Heart” surface. And even when the edge kicks in, it is particularly evident that a somewhat new Maybeshewill is present. Refined, calmer, and less one-dimensional than ever before, I Was Here For a Moment, Then I Was Gone tenders to a wider range of sentiments. Lead single “Critical Distance” epitomizes the record’s lighter side, riding a wonderfully constructed keyboard melody and electronic ambience to an emotive climax. With that said, it is only fitting that turbulent rocker (barring a few ambient sections) “Accolades” is the piece that follows, as it indicates that the Leicester-natives have not entirely abandoned their insistent roots. At its best however, I Was Here For a Moment, Then I Was Gone falls somewhere in the between with tracks such as “Farewell, Sarajevo.” A clash of tranquility and resentment, “Farewell, Sarajevo” takes each prevalent element from the album and perfects them; and the result is a stunning, poignant, and ultimately devastating track which ranks among the group’s superlatives.
I Was Here For a Moment, Then I Was Gone is not exactly a complete shift in direction for Maybeshewill, but is evidence that the post-rockers are evolving in terms of musicianship and diversity. The haziness of the message is what prevents the record from reaching an astronomical level however, as I Was Here For a Moment, Then I Was Gone does not pack the same poignant punch as Sing the Word Hope In Four-Part Harmony or even Not For Want of Trying. Maybeshewill’s preceding releases were successful in the fact that the inspiration and sincerity was apparent, but with I Was Here For a Moment, Then I Was Gone, this is left open to debate. Regardless, Maybeshewill has made an elaborate statement with their third record, even if one thing remains true: Maybeshewill is post-rock without the bullshit.
2. Take This to Heart
3. Red Paper Lanterns
4. Critical Distance
6. An End to Camaraderie
7. Words For Arabella
8. Farewell Sarajevo
9. Relative Minors
10. To the Skies From a Hillside
Maybeshewill are an instrumental band from Leicester, UK. Maybeshewill's music is characterised by the use of electronic elements alongside more traditional 'rock' instrumentation. The band's music is also littered with references to film and popular culture.... read more