Post-rock seems to have been born a genre already approaching middle age. While rock ‘n’ roll swaggered and screamed, this reticent cousin of indie-rock purposefully strode away from the testosterone. Post-rock’s aim was a departure from rock’s basic instincts, placing mood and texture over guitar hooks and shrill histrionics. This detour veered through jazz rhythms, ambient minimalism and world pop, often incorporating instruments not normally associated with rock: Banjos, vibraphones and wind instruments surfaced between the guitars, drums and electronic equipment. The label “post-rock” first appeared in the mid-1990s as an attempt to corral these unorthodox approaches into a stable we all could comprehend, and the term’s legitimacy is still dubious at best.
Yet however difficult the post-rock sound is to locate on a musical map, these slippery side streets of experimentalism seemingly converge in Chicago. The Windy City lays claim to some leading artists, including Gastr del Sol, Tortoise and The Sea and Cake, and the latter will be in Tokyo at the end of this month.
Read the entire review at The Japan Times Online.