The Promise Ring, Wood / Water

Jon Wiederhorn

By Jon Wiederhorn

on 04.22.11 in Reviews


The Promise Ring

After staking their claim as one of the more infectious bands in the emo spectrum, the Promise Ring tackled new ground with their fifth album, Wood/Water. Gone are generic power-pop passages, replaced by lethargic tempos and a more eclectic array of sounds including vibraphones, strings and even a choir. The songs are still rooted in beds of evocative guitars and longing vocals, but now the music is as ambitious as it is heartfelt. Tracks range from the enervating, arpeggiated emptiness of "Stop Playing Guitar" to the strummy guitars and Flaming Lips-style orchestrations of "Suffer Never." For six years they showed plenty of promise; with Wood/Water the Promise Ring finally lived up to their potential.