Tree No Leaves is a trio of Dustin Ray, Sarah Nicole and Matt Novak from Ohio and they’re offering two albums for download via their official site- “Under The Covers” was recorded in February of 2009, while “Peer Pressure / Mass Euphoria” was recorded in October.
“Peer Pressure / Mass Euphoria” starts out with “Pimped Out Crack Smuggler” – which begins as a Pink Floyd-ian collage of laughter and conversations that quickly spirals out of control and eventually gives way to a second part of the song, which is mostly driven by piano and drums. “Hallows” features further interplay between piano/drums, but also adds soaring (and wordless) vocals.
“Planet Blue” is a pleasant post-rock/ambient instrumental, while “Poor Schooling” is another instrumental that doesn’t seem to work out too well (for one, it sounds like overstays its welcome a bit). The last track “Summer Time Stress Monster” is the only track on the album to feature actual lyrics.
“Under The Covers” starts out with what sounds like a chopped dance track (“Knife (Funmaker Edition)”), while “Cry Babies Bridge” and “Interlude For You And You” are quiet guitar/ambient explorations (latter also features wordless vocals). The album ends with an edited version of “Hallows”, which sounds nearly identical to its namesake on “Peer Pressure”.
Stylistically, the band seems to be all over the place – there’s bits of ambient, post-rock, progressive and neo-classical genres and they travel from one destination to another without focusing on any particular style/genre. Sometimes, it sounds like this approach works against them (“Interlude With You And You” sounds too repetitious and “Poor Schooling” is way too long), but its also hard not to notice that all of the band’s music is very well-played and produced.
In sh0rt, those two record are exceptionally diverse in terms of ideas and their execution and that’s not something that you expect from a young band.