Ethereal pop rock act Lake Trout continues to surprise and pull big swerves on everyone everywhere. The band's newest release, Not Them, You hits the epitome of ambient, detached rocks that bands like Radiohead, Coldplay, etc have been doing for years. In my opinion, Lake Trout does it much better. Not Them, You features unique arrangements, larger leanings towards rock than pop, smooth transitive interludes, catchy lyrics, and one of the strangest cover songs ever.
The Baltimore based post-rock outfit craft well-written, layered, and truly interesting post-rock songs. The spacey rock song "Pill" is one of the best songs I've heard in this particular genre all year; it builds slowly into layered crescendos of airy, twinkling, post-rock chords, and then fades back into ambient pop. "Riddle" sounds like Radiohead at the top of the game, and in my opinion it sounds even better than the Brits. The almost trip-hoppy interlude "Not Them, You" kick starts a brief lull of solid songs on the album; this CD improves exponentially as it goes further into its own running time. "Now We Know" for example is a prime slab of radio-friendly post rock, catchy, polished, and non-threatening. The moody drowning song that is "King" slowly sinks your soul into a quagmire of misery and despair. A 80's pop rendition of The Rolling Stones' "Street Fighting Man" glistens with choral arrangements before leading into the strong shoe-gazing gem "Systematic Self." The delightfully spacey wanderings of "Keep Your Eyes Shut" drifts the album into a contented closing, and Not Them, You is more than worthy of repeated spinnings.
I didn't think much post-rock would emerge this year to defeat ...And You Will Know Us by the Trail of the Dead's Worlds Apart but Not Them, You stands right beside it. This is excellent, arty rock that transcends some of the Indie cliches and actually entices people like me who normally avoid this stuff like a case of Ebola Virus. Calm, serene, and fun, Lake Trout has upped the ante' yet again with this CD. Not Them, You is pop-rock at it's futuristic best.