I’m not sure whether to call Frames a post-rock band or not. The best thing, I think, is to say there are, but only part of the time. In that particular realm of guitar-driven instrumental music, genre convention dictates an approach that attempts to lay out a narrative via emotionally stirring music. Post-rock is sonic sturm und drang.
Frames are doing that, certainly. When they have their post-rock hats on, they do it as well as anyone else who plays this type of thing. However, for me the really interesting moments on “In Via” are when the band forgets about that sort of thing and goes off exploring in other musical directions.
In their quieter moments, the band is quite ingenious. Strings, piano, field recordings and electronics mix together to paint a very rich and nuanced emotional narrative. I actually found myself much more focused and involved during these moments, where I drifted during the bombast and crescendo.
Personally, I enjoyed this album, genre conventions aside. A few tracks mix the more interesting elements into the loud bits more effectively and would love to hear more of that kind of thing. Overall, the deftness displayed in handling the more subtle tracks would be a welcome extension to the rest of Frames sound.