The Rest :: "Who Knows" and "Laughing Yearning"

The Rest's third and best album, SEESAW, almost didn't happen. And here "didn't happen" means more than the ordinary, being-in-a-band-is-hard, the-van-broke-down-in-Cedar-Rapids, we-almost-got-day-jobs sort of way. Nearing completion, The Rest discovered the sessions and final mixes for SEESAW vanished from their hard drive. The college nightmare turned real independent music reality. Thus began a six month odyssey that involved, not figuratively, the people who recover information from aircraft black boxes. Eventually, from the digital abyss, their record returned and finds release today. The outcome, regardless of this tremulous proceeding, is stunning. "Who Knows", the album's first song, is a mixture of big shoegazing guitars and an aesthetic that recalls mid-90s Radiohead. The reverberating conclusion offers the sort of pathos sorely missing - rarely attempted - in rock music. It isn't "Creep", but the comparison is flattering. "Laughing Yearning" rings with a bit of the tropical pop of wide-open guitars and drum sticks rattling across tams and the edges of kits. This is what the Harlem Shakes attempted with real vigor on Technicolor Health but couldn't quite achieve. The Rest, and their record that almost wasn't, offer an LP of depth and quality, an album of the year contender to rival any of the heaviest of hitters in independent rock.

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