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afterdaylight thedelicatebalance
Artist: After Daylight
Title: The Delicate Balance
Genre: Instrumental / Post Rock
Release Date: 30th October 2020
Label: Tower Of Noise Records

Album Review

How to describe 2020? And not just the 2020 of The Virus, but the 2020 that’s seen uncontrolled surges in divisive politics, revolutions and revolts, crazy conspiracies, natural disasters, and a whole host of unpleasant weirdness with the occasional cheerful, rewarding, optimistic and astounding bits of news thrown in for balance. How to describe this? And to do it without words? This seems to be the task undertaken by Nottingham-based AFTER DAYLIGHT, an instrumental solo project by talented all-rounder Martin Bradley, new album ‘The Delicate Balance’ already his second release of the year. But then, there’s no shortage of inspiration, right?

There’s a palpable sense of dread from the very beginning on gracefully menacing opener ‘These Last Few Seconds’, pausing at the mid-point as if spent, exhausted, before bursting into a cacophony of searing guitar and scaring the life out of you. If ever there’s an audio track to the path of Covid19, it’s here. The title track suggests a less pessimistic journey, as it too piles on the layers to create a grandeur around the growing wall of sound. And ‘Stop Lying To Us’ sounds both weary and suspicious, and far more beautiful than the title would imply.

Things get intense on ‘Leaving It All Behind’, more intense on ‘There Is Never More Time’, where the drums decide to go all psychobilly half way through. And then it’s a way to drift into wonderful COCTEAU TWINS territory on the dreamy ‘Glad To Be Finally Alive’ and ‘Searching For Aurora’. The latter pulses from restrained to jittery and back again, a barely concealed sense of playfulness and joy peeping out through all that swooping and swirling. And the album closes with the bold march of ‘A journey Of Hope’, which feels like warning, reflection, rejection and salvation all in one busy blast of dignified noise. Stunning.

How, then, to describe 2020? No artist, visual, musical or otherwise, will ever capture the true essence of what continues to be a defining year in history. But to try, to personalise what we see and feel around us, to show our anger and dismay, as well as our dreams and hopes, surely that is the responsibility of the artist, visual, musical or otherwise. ‘The Delicate Balance’ does just that, offering one small piece of an indescribable whole. And it’s a much better place out there because of it.


01. These Last Few Seconds
02. The Delicate Balance
03. Stop Lying To Us
04. Leaving It All Behind
05. There Is Never More Time
06. Glad To Be Finally Alive
07. Searching For Aurora
08. A Journey Of Hope


Martin Bradley - All Instruments and Production

Website /

Cover Picture

afterdaylight thedelicatebalance


Music: 8
Sound: 8
Total: 8 / 10

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