When the notorious “sophomore slump” looms before them, many artists find the prospect of generating their second release to be a terrifying proposition. That slump could be myth or reality, but it had no bearing on The Restitution with Into The Dark. This follow-up to Waves (2013), Into The Dark has made it clear that The Restitution has spent the last four years wisely.
Into The Dark is deftly balanced between harshness and being delicate. Michael Wright, sole member of The Restitution, acutely delivers the album theme of “the brokenness of human connection” throughout the release. That concept is best portrayed on the album opener, “Swarm”.
Black fury spirals through this brittle architecture
Subdued, the fibers let go their tethered bonds
In comparison to the rest of Into The Dark, the closing track brings a subdued tone. Following it’s brief ambient intro, forcefulness is gradually brought into the song. The name, “Glimmer”, may give the expectation of a resolution to this disconnection, but it’s not assured.
Her brilliance lost in broken synapse
Where shadow feeds on fear and fault
But can She break through the miles
Of death and gloom that keep me here
On their latest release, The Restitution is brilliantly creative with it’s unusual blending of disparate genres. Emo, post-hardcore and progressive metal, merge together seamlessly on each song. The music is outstanding, but it’s lyrics are the strongest point of Into The Dark. The album has left this listener with more questions than answers about the songwriters search. These are the questions that lead to personal reflection and potentially a recognition of the place each of us takes in this world.
FFO: O’Brother, Thrice, Radiohead, Everything In Slow Motion, Deftones.