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4. The Heavens And The Earth
5. Of The Flesh
6. Robed In Majesty
7. The Least Of These
Hands. Such a simple yet evocative word. Our hands help us carry out countless tasks, allow us to touch the things we love and our hands enable us to create. A fitting band name for these North Dakotan men. They have picked up their instruments and created an amazing soundscape of hope and wonder. It is hard to believe this band is only a couple of years old as the melding of their playing creates an engaging tapestry.
Since their emergence in 2007 the band has managed to release a lengthy ep, “The Everlasting,” two full lengths, “The Sounds Of Earth,” and most recently “Creator.” Their previous efforts are excellent origins, but the band truly shines on their Facedown debut “Creator.” “Creator” is a fantastic culmination of the emotions and ideas that Hands has expressed thus far.
Hands is a tough band to categorize. They seamlessly integrate metalcore, post-rock and hardcore while still maintaining plenty of melody. Songs range from droning guitars to no holds barred breakdowns. “Creator” clocks in at over an hour so the band has given themselves plenty of room to explore. The album flows and changes form from moment to moment, requiring multiple listens to truly comprehend every intricate composition.
The individual contributions on “Creator” leave no one second stage. Each member is fully aware of his counterparts, and build steadily onto one another. There is a balance on “Creator” that can rarely be heard on modern releases. Drums and bass create a rock solid foundation that the guitars intricately build upon. Vocally, styles on “Creator” range from bellowing lows to heartfelt highs, conviction conveyed in every word. In addition to screamed vocals, “Creator” has a wealth of clean singing that creates an atmosphere not felt from any other band. Every instrument is self sustainable yet able to come together in synchronicity.
Lyrically Hands focuses on themes of love and hope revolving around a Christian ideology. Though Hands integrates their faith into their music, the lyrics on “Creator” do not shove faith down your throat, but merely give showcase to faith expression and perhaps provoke theological or ontological questions.
BOTTOM LINE: With “Creator” Hands has broken the mold of what a hardcore/metalcore album can be. Managing to meld so many ideas into one entity and make it work so well is astounding. Few modern bands have the creativity or potential longevity that Hands possesses. These four men will surprise you.