For Fans Of
It’s been a long wait for fans since 2008’s Other Voices, Other Rooms and the band’s subsequent hiatus. But after months of hinting and a series of teaser videos, Melbourne alt-rock favourites The Getaway Plan are back with a new album. And trust me, Requiem was well worth the wait.
The album starts off strong with single ‘The Reckoning’- layered piano and understated vocals build perfectly into an explosion of typical TGP hardcore-edged guitar riffs and a flawless falsetto chorus. Frontman Matthew Wright’s voice is better than ever, having matured from the raw screams of Hold Conversation-era TGP into an incredibly talented and unique vocalist. Next up is ‘Phantoms’, which surfaced online quite a while ago. This is actually perhaps the weakest track on the album, but that doesn’t particularly say much on an album like Requiem. ‘Phantoms’ is still an impressive, multi-layered and well produced track- definitely enjoyable and worth a few spins. On ‘Flying Colours’ things start to get a little heavier, and The Getaway Plan’s songwriting prowess comes to the surface. An atmospheric soundscape of tight guitar riffs, catchy melodies and thrashing drums comes together in a well-crafted, well-executed track that hints at an essence of the band’s earlier, heavier material.
‘Move Along’ is such an incredible track. Without a doubt the highlight of Requiem– this treasure of a song is so sincerely emotive, building from hauntingly fragile vocals and piano in crescendo to a heart-shattering, powerful chorus of ‘now this room is like a cage/I’ve been stuck in here for days/searching deep inside my mind/just to find a better place’. Every part of this track is perfectly paced, passionate and affecting on an incredible level. Later in the album comes ‘Oceans Between Us’, a beautifully sincere acoustic track, complete with subtle Robert Frost references (“After this fades/ we falter and discover/ everything gold will stay”) and pure, emotive vocals. The Getaway Plan have a hard-hitting emotional depth like no one else on the rock scene.
‘February’ is a gem, with strong, captivating melodies and beautifully executed choruses of ‘If we kiss/ we’ll ignite/ we could set this whole damn world alight/ and everything we know would burn away’. Requiem slows down a little more for ‘Coming Home‘- a distinctive orchestral track showcasing Wright’s soft falsetto vocals and flowing melodies. This lush orchestral sound flows into next track ‘STARS’, with a powerful, uplifting chorus and an awesome mesh of heavy guitars and soft violin. ‘Heartstone’ is another highlight of the album, and here the band’s incredible ability to layer sounds into heavy, atmospheric melodies is most evident. Every perfectly paced rhythm from drummer Aaron Barnett and bassist Dave Anderson meshes seamlessly with powerful, flowing hardcore-infused riffs from guitarist Clint Owen Ellis– creating the perfect backdrop for Wright’s soaring vocals. ‘Child of Light’ sees Matt Wright’s indie influences showing through- a little more reminiscent of his side project Young Heretics, awash with sunny acoustics and choir vocals.
Fans of older Getaway Plan material might not be impressed with Requiem– the only real element of Wright’s awesomely harsh screams come right at the end of the album with title track ‘Requiem‘. Starting acoustically, the track slows down to an assault of heavy, raw screams layered on beautiful orchestrals, creating a rich contrast of sounds that will leave you you dying for more.
It’s not hard to see why The Getaway Plan have such a dedicated fanbase. This band possesses and incredible depth of sincerity, songwriting talent and musicianship unlike anyone else on the alt-rock scene and Requiem is without doubt the band’s best effort yet. Despite lacking a little in the Hold Conversation style intensity some of us might have hoped for, Requiem is flawless. Each track on the album is a perfectly crafted treasure, alive with emotive lyrics, rich, contrasting soundscapes and unforgettable melodies.
There may have been some shaky years in between, but Requiem sees The Getaway Plan primed to reclaim their place at the forefront of Australian rock.
1. The Reckoning
3. Flying Colours
4. Move Along
6. Coming Home
9. Oceans Between Us
10. Child of Light