Since Sepultura's Chaos A.D. no album title has covered the album this well, until now. From Liège, Belgium hails Volver with 'Beautiful Sad Stories', an album that has absolutely nothing to do with Sepultura but has a very comprehensive title. There's nothing happy about this CD, except maybe the happiness found in discovering a highly talented band like Volver.
The album consists of six songs and two radio edits. All these have the same melancholic sentiment, hanging over them like a thick autumn mist. Once again we're dealing with a well attuned band that knows exactly how to create a down-hearted atmosphere. Lending from post rock, shoegaze and a bit of trip hop they play very sad pop songs. Some influences like Radiohead or Muse shine through but it's very clear that this is Volver's own distinct sound. The tempo is reasonably slow throughout the entire album.
Without the curbed vocals 'Beautiful Sad stories' would be a pretty good post rock album but in this case the voice lifts it all up to a different dimension, overcoming the restrictions of this genre. This, and the fact that there's two radio edits, make the whole radio- and listener friendly, possibly providing a curious audience for the band and probably a few loyal fans as well.
So in all, Beautiful Sad Songs is another excellent album from our own little country and Volver is a welcome addition to my increasing collection of remarkable CD's from bands from the French-speaking part of Belgium. This will undoubtedly be on the soundtrack for the upcoming autumn and winter at the Merchants of Air headquarters.