If you’ve ever found yourself saying, “I really loved this rock song…until they started singing,” then Germany-based Long Distance Calling’s sophomore album Avoid The Light is for you. There really are no words to speak of, just a continuation of guitar, drums, bass and a little something different-ambience.
As the usual instruments are listed on the band’s website, David Jordan on guitar, Janosch Rathmer on drums, Florian Füntmann on guitar, and Jan Hoffmann on bass, Reimut van Bonn plays ambience on the computer. What a digital age we live in. Not often listed as a major instrument, this ambience is drowned out a lot by the guitars and drums, but stands out sometimes more than others such as on the first track.
“Apparitions” leads us into the album gently with a sound that could be compared with raindrops falling all around you. The guitars and drums are slowly added until the buildup gets heavier and a steady beat transpires. This continues in and out until the end when the ambience comes through and with the sound of crackling fire, brings the song to a close.
“Black Paper Planes” almost sounds as if it could be on a loop, yet somehow never gets tiresome. This is true for the whole album. In spite of all the songs having similarities to each other, there isn’t any monotony. Once you get into the music, you stay there until the CD is over.
The only track that does include vocals is “The Nearing Grave.” They are sung by Jonas Renske from death metal band Katalonia, and blend in with the music well with a lot of echo effects.
A good attribute to this band’s music is its ability to let the listener make what it will of the music. The fact that only one song on the album has vocals leaves the hard guitar riffs, thumping bass, pounding drums, and whimsical ambience open to interpretation. It captures happiness, anger, and yearning - whatever you want it to.
Once you listen to a track on Avoid The Light, you’ll have to listen to the rest just to see where it can take you. This fantastic display of musicianship is definitely worth a listen.