Follow TV Tropes


Music / Explosions in the Sky

Go To
Left to right: Munaf Rayani, Mark Smith, Chris Hrasky, Michael James
Explosions in the Sky are an American Post-Rock band from Texas. As they were unloading their gear before an early show, fireworks were going off nearby. One of the band members blurted out, "Can you hear the explosions in the sky?" The name stuck. Here we go...

Formed in 1999 after drummer Chris Hrasky posted a flyer in a record store reading "wanted; sad, triumphant rock band," the foursome (Hrasky and guitarists Michael James, Mark Smith, and Munaf Rayani) quickly became well known in the Austin music scene, and were signed to Temporary Residence Limited after another Austin band submitted their demo accompanied by a note reading "This totally fucking destroys." They have since then released six albums, composed music for the films Friday Night Lights and Lone Survivor, been Mistaken For Terrorists, curated a music festival, and still managed to remain in relative obscurity.

Explosions in the Sky albums so far are:

  • How Strange, Innocence (2000)
  • Those Who Tell the Truth Shall Die, Those Who Tell the Truth shall Live Forever (2001)
  • The Earth is Not a Cold Dead Place (2003)
  • The Rescue (2005)
  • All of a Sudden I Miss Everyone (2007)
  • Take Care, Take Care, Take Care (2011)
  • The Wilderness (2016)
  • End (2023)


  • Big Rock Ending: "Look Into the Air"
  • Boléro Effect: During the second half of "Time Stops."
  • Concept Album: "The Rescue" tells the true story of eight days spent in a stranger's attic after the band's van broke down.
    • "The Earth is Not a Cold Dead Place" tends to be theorized as this.
  • Epic Rocking: The amount of Explosions in the Sky songs sans this trope can be counted on one hand.
    • There's not a single track on The Earth Is Not a Cold Dead Place under eight minutes long.
  • Fake-Out Fade-Out: "Look Into the Air" has a rather pleasant-sounding fade-out, which is immediately contrasted with a blaring, distorted guitar chord that leads into the final minute and a half of the song.
  • Instrumentals: Almost every single song.
  • Mistaken for Terrorist: They are called Explosions in the Sky. Their second album was called Those Who Tell the Truth Shall Die, Those Who Tell the Truth shall Live Forever, they have a distinctly Middle Eastern guitarist, and the album art features a plane, an angel, and the ominous words, "This plane will crash tomorrow." To make matters even stickier, it was released exactly one week before the 9/11 attacks, and rumors spread that it was released one day before. Michael James was detained in the Amsterdam airport shortly after the album's release and asked to explain why his guitar had "This plane will crash tomorrow" written on it. The band got out of that situation by flashing some copies.
    • Over a decade later, a US venue garnered some controversy for booking the band on September 11, since the marquee read "9/11 - Explosions In The Sky".
  • Post-Rock: They don't consider themselves this, but everyone else does.
  • Precision F-Strike: Seems unlikely, considering none of their songs have lyrics. However, "Day Three" on The Rescue incorporates several spoken recordings made by the band during the titular event (see the Concept Album entry above), and at one point the words "We're fucked" can be heard.
  • Title Drop: "Have You Passed Through This Night?" Via an audio sample from The Thin Red Line.
  • Wild Hair: Photos of Munaf Rayani on stage frequently display his long locks flying.