Wren
(Host)
2016
Crank this to 9.4 of 11
|    Editor's Pick
Genre:
Atmospheric metal, Sludge rock
Sounds Like:
Cult of Luna, ISIS, Fudge Tunnel
This is the perfect EP for Isis (the band) fans who may be yearning for something new. Ok, Wren may not be Isis but man they certainly do a good job of channeling their older works. The foursome hailing  from London, England do a tremendous job with contrast as they capture this aura through all four tracks. 

What is most distinguishable about Host is the grinding dark sludge complemented with the high-pitched Tool-like (Undertow days) screeching guitar-work. The formula is one that never bores which is somewhat of an uncommon occurrence these days in the post-metal world. Wren has an uncanny knack for knowing when to change tempos and chords. They also have this EP thing down to an art. Host and their previous self-titled EP are chock-full of entertaining details and meaty song lengths.

Tracks:

1. Stray - 8:23
2. No Seance - 5:11
3. The Ossuary - 6:40
4. Loom - 8:39

"Stray" features some very intense bass-work that is so divergent from the "Soberesque" lead guitar fretwork that they go together like bees to honey. The vocals are abrasive as all hell and remind us of the good old days when Fudge Tunnel ruled the hardcore underground.

"No Seance" bleeds the most melodic of the four tracks. What a great undercurrent of brooding bass on this one. The energy on this track is fantastic. Wren and bring it down with the best of them and then hit some incredible highs.

On "The Ossuary" the high pitched fretwork is at its best. The track has the most intense contrast within the entire EP. We go from weeping depression to utter angst.

"Loom" as its name suggests creeps and sticks around for over 8 minutes featuring a much more calculated climb. The transitions here are a bit more subtle, but powerful nonetheless.

Host is a brilliantly well thought out EP. Wren has put so much energy and hard work within these 28 minutes that they should command the full price of an LP. This one deserves your attention. 'Host' is a must for any sludge and post rock enthusiast. - 6/29/2016

Standout Tracks: All of 'em.

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