Sonna is a group that takes their time getting places on their new release
We Sing LoudSing Soft Tonight. A four-piece band that is mostly instrumental, they have a fairly straightforward structure on most of their tracks, but have created an album that is quite listenable and very interesting, mainly because of how they focus on how different instruments play off one another. Comprised of two guitars, a bass, drums, and a rhodes organ or piano, they weave long songs with the instruments and add some occassional vocals.
The release starts with the aptly titled, "The Opener" and you get a good taste of what the group can do. Over the course of about nine minutes, some twinkling guitars play off one another while the light drumming lifts every once in awhile to add an extra flourish of sound. Although the track is fairly long and seemingly simple (the guitar parts riff on sort of the same arrangements over and over), the way the instruments play against each other helps the track work quite well. If the opening track was good, though, the second one is absolutely stellar. "Low And To The Side" is quite possibly one of the prettiest tracks that I've heard this year so far. Adding a piano to the mix, the track lopes along nicely before getting slightly louder in the middle and changing into something just slightly more urgent. Instrumental beauty, simple as.
The middle two tracks on the album (which split into two provide the album title) of "We Sing Loud" and "Sing Soft Tonight" are actually probably the more weak points on the album. The instrumentation just doesn't seem quite as inspired (especially on the first of the two tracks) and the vocals work some of the time (mainly when they're sung in regular tones as opposed to falsetto). The latter track actually recalls something that Low would have done a couple albums ago with it's absolutely lethargic pacing and shimmering rains of cymbals. On the epic-length "Sleep On It," the group takes their time getting there, but actually reach a climax which makes you wish that they'd rock out a bit more often. The piano again makes an appearence and fleshes things out just the right amount.
The album closes out with probably the most upbeat track on the entire disc, and it's a nice way to end things. With 6 tracks stretched out to just over 45 minutes worth of time, it's a disc that lingers a bit too much in places, but still ends up working most of the time. If you like the slow instrumental rock (think of a slower, more interplaying Tristeza and you're getting somewhere close) with intertwining guitars and lots of simple percussion, this would do you fine. Another young group to keep an eye on.