The Appleseed Cast
The Fleeting Light Of Impermanence, 180G White Vinyl LP, Ltd. 2,000 Copies (First 2,000 copies of this release came with arigato-style packaging)!
Though years of sustained, steady success allowed the Appleseed Cast’s Chris Crisci to table the prospect of day jobs and fatherhood, it drained the band of the kind of mystique that powers rapturous reunions. Second-wave peers in Pedro the Lion, Braid, the Get Up Kids, the Jazz June, and American Football returned after long hiatuses with considerate, measured takes on maturity and familial obligation; when Crisci reckoned with “fear and irrelevance and not wanting to become an adult” on 2013’s Illumination Ritual, it was simply one new Appleseed Cast album among many. Crisci admits that it was an insecure work, timid in its viewpoint and execution. An album titled The Fleeting Light of Impermanence is no less aware of humanity’s cosmic insignificance, but the band has come to accept the freedom within: We’re here and then we’re gone, so why not make as much noise as possible?
The Fleeting Light of Impermanence does nothing you haven’t heard them do before—all of those things are just done more emphatically. Throughout two decades, the common quality of the Appleseed Cast has been “oceanic”: the misty spray of reverb across their debut The End of the Ring Wars, the midnight-zone submersion of Low Level Owl, an album called Mare Vitalis, and a symphonic post-emo swell that seemed to echo from Sunny Day Real Estate’s The Rising Tide. This time, the opener is called “Chaotic Waves” because the hyperbolic drums push against familiar, stately guitars and Crisci’s stoic bellow, recasting the band’s tidal dynamics as a cruel battle of man and nature—a ship caught in a hurricane, fighting to a satisfying standstill.
Crisci usually favors evocative and evasive wordplay that aims just outside the heart or the gut, at times neutralizing the visceral effect of his band. This time, he follows the lead of their most forceful music by saying exactly what he means: “When they try to defeat you/Just clench your fist tight/Stand up and fight,” or “We've got one day to give/One day to work and live and hold the world.” If they have any fear of their own obsolescence, the Appleseed Cast shout it down with more carpe diem slogans and fire imagery than a Japandroids record. -Pitchfork