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The Out_Circuit-Lujo Records

The Out_Circuit – Pierce the Empire with a Sound

Lujo Records

Well-crafted rock that pulls from alternative, post-hardcore and shoegazing elements.

One can not begin to slap a genre on The Out_Circuit, as there are too many influences. What one can do is applaud front man Nathan Burke for an impressive repertoire of genres. The album’s described to be post-hardcore, but that doesn’t help explain the sound to the reader. Many of the songs have genre-spanning soundscapes and the well-crafted use of keyboards. The most incredible aspect is that Burke is The Out_Circuit mostly by himself, getting occasional help from other artists.

Opener “Come Out Shooting” has a perfect title and energy for a beginning track. It combines soundscapes one would get from shoegazer, post-hardcore screams and bass lines and alternative rock backup vocals. This combination seems strange at first, but it is perfectly executed. Screams are usually a put-off for me, but combined with gentle soundscapes and a pulsing bass line, it increases the intensity and tension of the music.

The album intricately weaves in and out of an intense energetic sound into a more laidback and playful tone. Many of Burke’s lyrics are intriguing and cryptic. On “Across the Light” he sings “Across the land/across the light/I wonder how the distant forms I see,” with Rachel Burke fading in and out of the lyrics, making for an excellent duet. Every track on Pierce The Empire With A Sound offers the listener something new. The only complaint that I can come up with is that the person who is shouting on “The Fall of Las Vegas” does it a little too intensely and comes off a bit absurd. But that’s just scraping the bottom of the barrel.

I still scratch my head how one man can turn out such a project with incredible execution. All of the tracks are arranged perfectly and there are no dead stops. Nathan Burke is definitely an artist to keep an eye on.

Tim Wallen