Album Review: My Epic - 'Ultraviolet'

23 March 2018 | 1:19 pm | Staff Writer
Originally Appeared In

The first of two concept EP's dives deeper into melodic territory.

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My Epic return with the first of two new concept EPs, 'Ultraviolet', and have explored further down the path of ambience and melody than any of their previous releases. Their official statement read as such:

With Ultraviolet, the first instalment of a two-EP concept release, My Epic examine some of the more difficult aspects of faith, dealing with things which are beyond sight and understanding. ‘Let’s not pretend all of the answers fit together perfectly like a puzzle. We encounter things that make us concerned, angry, uncertain or anxious, and the rote explanations we’ve been given are found wanting.’”

To tackle such a universal and unavoidably difficult topic in a five-track EP is ambitious if nothing else. With the second instalment Violence (coming in late 2018) promising to be “the band’s heaviest project to date”, 'Ultraviolet' takes a comparatively subdued approach, presumably what will be the yin to 'Violence’s yang. This freedom to explore more ambient and melodically driven material that has always played a small part in the band’s sound has largely paid off and proven that My Epic are a group of serious musicians that are willing to experiment and branch out into new territory.

As I’ve mentioned before, I am always wary when I read the term “Christian band”, but the lyrical content on 'Ultraviolet' reaches out into places that are universal in their anxiety, frustration and questioning. Given a longer run time I would just love to see the band dig deeper and wrestle with these themes some more, but given there is more on the way later this year I am willing to wait and see what else they bring to the table with 'Violence'.

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The trouble with a double release like this, though, is that I am hesitant to make any hard or fast calls on this EP until I hear the second half of the story. It’s like watching The Deathly Hallows Part 1 or some other broken up piece of media on the mere promise that it is only the first half of the story; you can’t make a call until you can see the full story in its entirety. The same is true of this project – by itself, it is fine enough, but the promise of a heavier companion piece has me curious to see how heavy and how pretty it all comes together in the completed project. Whether or not it was as a result of being told 'Ultraviolet' was part one of two, I felt that the direction the band went in wasn’t the complete picture of the vision that they were planning on delivering, and that was more than a little frustrating for me. However, if this is anything to go by then I’ll definitely be keeping an eye out for 'Violence' later this year!

While it’s definitely a bold step forwards for My Epic that proves they aren’t interested in simply producing the same thing over and over (not that we had any doubt about that at this stage), there was a lack of contrast or development to be had across the five tracks. However, judgement should be restrained on that front until part two is released later this year – hopefully then 'Ultraviolet' will take on a whole new light, or at the very least fit into a well-rounded and completed project.

  1. Of Wilderness
  2. Voices
  3. So Be It
  4. In Absentia
  5. Two Nights

'Ultraviolet' is out March 30th.