This Will Destroy You's sophomore full-length finds the post-rockers moving glacial soundscapes to the foreground and doing away with overdriven amps to make a more subdued album. For a while there, it was as if bands in the post-rock scene were in a competition to see who could achieve the most epic, monolithic burst. It was only a matter of time before it would reach a limit. Only a few weeks earlier, fellow Texans Explosions in the Sky released Take Care, Take Care, Take Care, a record that found them scaling back and swelling slowly over the course of six tracks. TWDY downplay things even more, and go almost completely ambient on Tunnel Blanket. With its icy, synthesized arrangements, “Glass Realms” could be a Brian Eno track, and “Reprise” has more in common with Sigur Rós than Mogwai. This is the type of music found in dreams. The album takes shape very slowly, with each song subtly outdoing the last, and it isn’t until the halfway point that a drumbeat becomes tangible. Finally, in the second to last song, “Black Dunes,” there is a climax with reverberated cymbal crashes and fat bass tones, before the hypnotic strings of “Powdered Hand” bring everything down to a lovely lull. Good proof that tranquil moments are just as powerful as deafening ones.
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AllMusic Review by Jason Lymangrover