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Engine Down formed in Harrisonburg, Virginia, in 1996 and over time transplanted their roots to Richmond, Virginia's fertile ground. This band rose phoenix-like from the ashes of such powerful rock phenomena as Sleepytime Trio, The Weak Link Breaks, and Bughummer. The distinct personalities that make up Engine Down are no strangers to the white shores of emo credibility that are seen from their citadel: they've been bringing the rock for years.Read More...
From the first live appearance -- at an indie murder mystery movie -- to recent shows that sometimes feature a live cellist, Engine Down has truly come a long way. The band's diverse instrumentation -- including cello, piano, and vibraphone -- shows that they are not afraid to push their sound to new limits. At the same time, they maintain a dynamic and intense energy by balancing churning guitars, powerful bass, and intricate drums.
Before any full-length, Engine Down released two seven-inch records on Lovitt and Brave Noise Records.
"Slingshot" and "Brushes" both come from Engine Down's first full-length, Under the Pretense of Present Tense (1998, Lovitt Records). The melodic "Intent to Pacify," from 2000's To Bury Within the Sound (also on Lovitt), relies on restrained emotion and intricate instrumentation to achieve its full impact.
After the release of a 5 song ep called A Sign of Breath (2001, Lovitt Records), in early 2002 the Virginia quartet offered their third full-length, Demure, a solid record which demonstrates their continuing development in balancing emotional appeal with adventuresome rock. No, Engine Down doesn't try to wage out-and-out war on your eardrums anymore; they've grown beyond that with an increasingly diverse arsenal of tools and an appealingly groove-oriented sensibility. With its edgy staccato guitar and chanted vocals, the rhythmic "Pantomime" offers evidence of the band's complex talent, managing to be catchy and challenging at the same time.
Their fourth, and last, full-length came out in 2004. The self-titled Enginedown (Lookout Records) appeared with the band's distinctive sound, but also with a different rock accent, which was easier for those who had never listened to the band previously (and was maybe not so peculiar for those who listened to the previous albums). The Farewell Tour was the band's big goodbye, as they decided to disband before the tour. Their last release is the Farewell Tour DVD.