“Tao Of The Dead” is the new album by …And You Will Know Us By The Trail Of Dead. The band announced that this album was inspired by the sounds of 70’s progressive rock bands like Yes, Pink Floyd and Rush with the result that “Tao Of The Dead” became a concept album in the end. Musically it’s a mix of post-core and progressive punk rock.
The album starts with the fanfare-like Introduction: ‘Let’s Experiment’ which segues into ‘Pure Radio Cosplay’. This second track already shows what many songs of the album are like: rock hymns with a cutting sound which remind me of Green Day and The Who. At least ‘Pure Radio Cosplay’ is worked out in true prog style length, just like ‘Summer Of All Dead Souls’ and ‘The Fairlight Pendant’. Sadly the other tracks are kept short at 2½ to 3 minutes. It would be much more interesting if these songs were worked out as they are better than the longer ones. With such tracks like ‘Cover The Days Like A Tidal Wave’ or the rather quiet ‘Spiral Jetty’, the band achieves to create a genuine sound instead of just blasting power chords and shouting vocals. Between the songs are very interesting and effect-laden interludes which consist of feedback and synthesizer bleeps. These add a great part to the album’s atmosphere and the powerful overall sound.
The final song is the 16½ minute long ‘Strange News From Another Planet’. Although the elements are the same as before, this track makes sense as the ideas as well as the structure are worked out fully this time. If they had only done this with the other tracks! This is the best song of the album.
All in all “Tao Of The Dead” is a good album with a fresh sound – yet some of the tracks just sound like usual rock songs and the interesting ones are too short (except the final song).