The Gentlemen’s Anti-Temperance League – ‘Identity Crisis’ EP

Spanning from traditional acoustic jazz to invigorating electric rock, Identity Crisis is an enveloping new EP from The Gentlemen’s Anti-Temperance League. The EP is also described “a split EP with Awful Offal,” the band’s alter egos; it’s representative of the enjoyable stylistic splits within. The project’s stylish, dynamic blend of the past and present makes for a compelling sound throughout, as The Gentlemen’s Anti-Temperance League have showcased over the past six years with five albums and hundreds of shows.

“So Many Mouths to Feed” kicks off the EP with palpable immersion. Vocals depict an unrequited love that resonates with eerie envelopment amidst string-laden infusions and a steady guitar backing. “I can’t sleep, I got promises to keep,” they further into the title-touting sequence, punctuated by chilly strings. “Frozen” follows with a debonair, acoustic jazz minimalism to start as a smoky vocal captivation takes hold. The “open up my petals,” sequence enthralls in its bolstered strings and ascending vocal emotion.

The EP includes both an acoustic and electric version of “Verisimilitude,” with the former concluding the EP’s more jazz-forward first half. Acoustics, strings, and outpouring vocals again emerge with captivating qualities, while the electric version implements a more bustling bass line alongside delectably expressive electric guitar work. “Glue Factory” continues in that rock vein, moving into an enjoyably eerie wordlessness past the one-minute turn as trickling guitars and intriguing murmurs interlace; it’s another showcase in atmospheric, rewarding structural development from the act.

“Shake the Chains” concludes the release with the act’s most anthemic rock fervency. Pulsating rhythmic intensity and whirring guitar-forward excitement corresponds with charismatic vocals for a spirited invigoration. The Gentlemen’s Anti-Temperance League is a fantastic showcase in eclectic stylism and melodic satiation from The Gentlemen’s Anti-Temperance League.

Mike Mineo

I'm the founder/editor of Obscure Sound, which was formed in 2006. Previously, I wrote for PopMatters and Stylus Magazine.

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