Respire are a six-piece “post-everything” band from Toronto, Ontario that formed in 2013. This is a project I admittedly slept on for a long time, which is a damn shame because “members of Foxmoulder” should be a selling point in and of itself. Regardless, that feels like a millenia ago, since their recent sophomore release has left an unforgettable wake in its path. It’s the kind of thing that makes your eyes bulge while your hands grip the steering wheel, and you can’t help but mutter loudly “holy shit, this is awesome”.
Dénouement is a collapse of catharsis, featuring sprawling instrumentals and searing vocals. The band blends a multitude of sounds and emotions throughout these eight tracks, making it one of the most heavy-hitting releases in recent history. They take influence from genres as diverse as screamo, post-rock, post-hardcore, blackgaze, and even hints of classical, making their “post-everything” descriptor spot on. Respire is a notably collaborative effort, with numerous musicians performing on record in addition to the core members. This brings in a whole other layer of instrumentation, including strings, brass instruments, and keys, among other things that really lift its skinny fists to this grandiose sound. This record has me completely floored, and floods with these intensive build-ups and calming moments throughout. Respire have truly crafted a masterpiece here, and I cannot recommend this album enough.
Also, I don’t want to leave their debut unmentioned, Gravity And Grace is also a stellar record, and the crescendo at the end of “Ascent” will leave a single tear in your eye. If your a fan of bands like Suffocate For Fuck Sake, Envy, Deafheaven, or even Godspeed You! Black Emperor, do not let Respire go by in your rearview. Trust me, you will regret it. Additionally, I can’t let the chance to shout out Zegema Beach Records go to waste, since they are the geniuses who put Dénouement out. You can grab a copy below, or from one of the other fantastic labels who backed it. Enjoy.