ShamRain Isolation 2011 Review by Time_Signature

8.0
Non-Prog Rock
On their latest album, ShamRain deliver melancholic alternative rock with a touch of minimalism and heavy influences from the alternative rock of the 90s. Despite the minimalism and simplicity of most of the tunes on this album, ShamRain's use of keyboards and synths do generate a certain sonic lushness, which sometimes borders on the atmospheric.

The female vocals are soft and emotive and, along with the production, the vocals add a certain warmness to the otherwise quite melancholic music. This does not, however, create any form of tension or incongruity, as the soft and warm vocals seem volatile and vulnerable against the backdrop of the music itself.

Although sharing many characteristics with more melancholic and shoegazing 90s alternative rock, ShamRain also seem to draw on 80s acts like U2, The Pixies and The Cure, among others, while a track like 'Until Twilight' even sounds a bit inspired by the theme from Twin Peaks.

"Isolation" is a warm, yet melancholic, album which offers both minimalism and lushness at the same time, and it is very well put together. In particular, I think it will appeal to fans of acts like U2, The Cure, The Pixies (although the noise element is absent), Mew and the like. It is recommended to fans of gothic rock, melancholic rock, alternative rock and atmospheric rock.