Hailing from Twin Cities, Minnesota, Elders is set to release their second EP which is entitled Riverbeds in August. Their first EP, Worlds Away, caught me by surprise and I was very impressed. If you haven't listened to it yet, it's a mix of melodic and progressive hardcore with a touch of ambience. Riverbeds, on the other hand, is much more ambient. The EP is just over 10 minutes in length and almost half of it is comprised of instrumental interludes, but that's not to say it is bad. Actually, I am saying the complete opposite. Riverbeds is nearly perfect because of all of the different aspects heard on it and because it is both ambient and heavy.
Elders manages to blend ambience and hardcore flawlessly on Riverbeds and there are several instances heard on the release to back up my point. The EP opens with the title track "Riverbeds". To start, you are blessed with an extremely soothing ambient passage which slowly builds up to the verse. Even though I was expecting the screaming to turn up eventually, it surprised me the first time I gave this EP a listen, and it actually startled me a little bit. "Riverbeds" comes to an end with a little outro solo.
The other track on the EP, "Windtalker", starts off in a very similar way as "Riverbeds". Both tracks have about a minute of ambience and then transition into a more powerful, progressive hardcore style. The second ambient passage of this song features angelic clean vocals belting out "You forgot the rest of us/Waiting around without a sense of heart/Messages suggest you know we are still here waiting for word to come". Following one of the most relaxing parts on the EP, you're hit with a very aggressive outro and monstrous vocals.
It's a hard to pick a favourite song from Riverbeds because it is only two tracks long, but I think "Windtalker" is the strongest of the two because it has everything that you could ask for. Nevertheless, the EP as a whole is absolutely outstanding and I recommend it to anyone who enjoys ambient/melodic hardcore.