Listen: Revere

Just when you think it’s safe to switch off the radar, along comes a band that shatters any illusions that you really have heard it all before. Revere is a rather wonderful eight-piece band from London, UK. Their fusion of rock and orchestral instrumentation allied to a genuinely great and expressive lead vocalist produces music with a freshness and, dare I say it, originality, often claimed but rarely achieved.

Revere add violin, cello, keys, trumpet and glockenspiel into a guitar-led sound, absorbing an unusual array of musical influences, effortlessly and with great artistry. Elements of gypsy marches, klezmer, post rock, film scores and gospel are skilfully welded to create a truly unique sound. The songs can open with music-box softness yet build into relentless walls of sound, so much so that the sheer intensity, drama and passion of the band’s live performance just has to be experienced.

For all this, the Brits are still relatively unknown. Such anonymity is likely to end with the release of their debut album, Hey Selim, come November. Meanwhile you have their current single, the immeasurably beautiful “As the Radars Sleep”, to whet your appetite. The song builds intensely with pounding drums to the fore from the start over moody organ and guitars. It constructs itself in layers, reaching a choral crescendo before falling away to a bare and mournful guitar theme, which is then amplified by strings and fully developed by the band almost as an extended coda, before dissolving into a lovely tinkling ending. Just imagine ballerinas!

There are plenty more gems to be uncovered when the album is finally unveiled with perhaps the rarest jewel of all being “The Escape Artist”. This stunning orchestral-rock tour-de-force has a haunting slow climb breaking into epic waves of sound, which realease tumultuous outpourings of genuine emotion. Vocally and instrumentally this is as good as it gets, other than perhaps seeing the band perform it live. Here is the marvelous accompanying video, directed by Vanessa Caswill (4Talent Best Director 2007) and largely financed by fans of the band.

Warning: “The Escape Artist” may be one of the best songs you’ve never heard.

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