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Act III: Life And Death

24 customer reviews

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Audio CD, June 23, 2009
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$11.99 & FREE Shipping on orders over $35. Details Only 7 left in stock. Ships from and sold by Amazon.com. Gift-wrap available.

Frequently Bought Together

Act III: Life And Death + Act I: The Lake South the River North + Act II: The Meaning Of, And All Things Regarding Ms. Leading
Price for all three: $30.97

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Editorial Reviews

Following up where Act II left off Act III is more melodic record with the heavy parts heavier, and the soft parts more serene. Set in a WWI era, "Act III" documents the metamorphosis of a fictional central character as he makes the transition from innocence to impurity. Look for them on tour with Mewithoutyou. RIYL: Circa Survive, Thrice, Chiodos, Mars Volta, Coheed & Cambria.


Product Details

  • Audio CD (June 23, 2009)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Triple Crown
  • ASIN: B00274SIJ2
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (24 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #49,029 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

18 of 19 people found the following review helpful By Baggiesfaninessex on July 6, 2009
Format: Audio CD
'Act I: The Lake South, The River North' was a brilliant taster - a 39 minute EP. 'Act II: The Meaning Of, And All Things Regarding Ms. Leading' was an awesome, sprawling, 77 minute progressive epic. And now we come to Act III: Life and Death - the third chapter (of six planned) in a fictional character's story continues from Acts I and II into the fiery abyss of World War I.

Let's get the rating out of the way first. I adored the first two chapters and would not hesitate in giving them 5 stars. But as a result, I should really give this album 6 stars (or reduce the other 2 to 4.5 stars should I review them here) as this surpasses anything that Casey Crescenzo has produced to date. It is one of the catchiest, most melodic rock albums I have heard for years. It's not quite as progressive as Act II but the range of styles, instruments and arrangements on display here show a maturity that has developed in Casey's writing and as a result, this record arguably has a more commercial edge, albeit the quirkyness remains with some very atmospheric sound effects between some tracks.

Now whereas it's easy to draw comparisons from Casey's previous group The Receiving End of Sirens and similar indie rock fare such as Circa Survive and also from modern prog-heads such as The Mars Volta and Coheed and Cambria, those groups might mean little to those who rely on UK radio airplay to whet their musical appetite. With Act III: Life and Death it's easy to draw comparisons with a wealth of more commercial musical talent with which most will be familiar. Here's my rundown of all tracks:

1. Writing on a Wall - Opens the album with the most beautiful accapella harmonies before piano joins in.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By rocker on August 25, 2009
Format: MP3 Music Verified Purchase
I own Acts I-III, all of which are stellar releases, amazingly high quality music. This is heavily produced, highly emotional prog-pop. A lot of it plays like old time show tunes, or like Broadway musical tunes. There are multilayered harmonies (gorgeous), punctuating horns, and soaring string arrangements, alongside inventive guitar and keyboard parts. This Crescenzo guy is a genius with first rate writing, playing, vocal skills. He recorded Act I demos with just his brother and his mom, I guess.

On any of these three releases is some of the most beautiful rock music you will hear this year. I guess there's a story and six albums planned to tell it, but I could care less about that, the quality of this music is quenching, independent of a story. Really great.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Michael Johnson on June 27, 2009
Format: Audio CD
We hold these truths to be self evident, that all musicians were not created equally. In the case of The Dear Hunter master mind Casey Crescenzo, this is especially true. Amongst the legions of mediocre artists bleeding over into todays music scene, a virtuoso such as Crescenzo is certainly a breath of fresh air. It's a shame that a great majority of people have never heard of Crescenzo, or his band.

For those unfamiliar, The Dear Hunter is like the illegitimate musical love child of Elton John and Pink Floyd-add a creative ragtime/jazz/prog blend with strings and the occasional Beach Boy's-esque vocal layering thrown in for good measure, their sound is a wonderful amalgam of many different styles and instrumentation.

Their current Album, Act III: Life And Death, is the third part of a planned six act concept opus. While many bands have crumbled under the weight of gasp, a concept album, Crescenzo flourishes. With each subsequent release being better than the last, The Dear Hunter (or TDH) is one of the rare groups out there that are consistently bettering themselves instead of remaining stagnant.

The TDH's previous album, Act II: The Meaning Of & All Things Regarding Ms. Leading, was critically praised and helped catapult the band (somewhat) out of obscurity. Act II offered a wide variety of musical styles and sounds, and it was clear that this album was Crescenzo's playground for experimenting with his brand of music writing. In comparison, Crescenzo went for a more streamlined approach for Act III, but this is not a bad thing; the album as a whole sounds more cohesive than their previous efforts.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Steven Sly on December 21, 2009
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
"Life And Death" is the third in a series of concept albums from the Dear Hunter which deal with a main character called "The Boy". The albums chronicle this character's life and in this the 3rd installment he is a young man caught in the middle of World War I (I think). This is my first experience with this band, so I am kind of coming into the middle of this tale and am not totally sure what the story is all about, but this album can very much stand on it's own outside of its overall place in the rest of the project. The band's sound is a mix of Muse, The Mars Volta, Jellyfish and even a little bit of Queen. This is modern progressive rock and is a very impressive work. The Dear Hunter's main man is Casey Crescenzo who wrote all of the material sings and plays various instruments. The album is great all the way through, but really gains momentum on the last half which is simply stunning. It would be interesting to see how well these guys can pull this off in a live setting. I am not aware of them playing live anywhere near where I live, but I would jump at the chance to catch them. Anyway, this album is one of the best discs of 2009 in my opinion and should be a must by for fans of progressive rock ala Muse, Queen, or the Mars Volta, with a dash of Jellyfish and Queen.
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