“Hands Of Penance”
May 27, 2014 - Tooth & Nail
From Yes to Muse, bands with prog tendencies have tended to succeed by knowing exactly how far they can stray from the old-time rock ’n’ roll pulse that thumps below the grandiloquent gestures. This Louisville, Kentucky, sextet do an admirable job of anchoring their more outré leanings—expressed via such prog hallmarks as an esoteric name (it’s from a quote attributed to the fiddling-while-Rome-burned Emperor Nero), intricate webs of delayed guitar and even that old warhorse, the Hammond organ—with a straightforward drive that recalls early-’00s icons like Glassjaw and Taking Back Sunday. Time In Place has its slow patches, like the underwhelming drift of “Overview.” But it’s bookended by a pair of tracks—“No Stranger To Worry” and “The Golden Age”—that find the anthems beneath the airiness, and epitomize that sometimes elusive Golden Mean between ambition and emotion.