I’ve seen Howl Ensemble play and as musicians they look nothing like the sort of band you’d think (after listening to this) they should look like; coming over as a bunch of Heavy Metal escapees.
A rumbustious record, full of fizzing post rock structures that break down, or meander off to nowhere in particular; in the way lots of post-rock does. Luckily it’s not really a post-rock record. This LP has slightly more of a psychedelic feel to it; things like the break in Cloud [sic!] [sic!] and Apocalypse are reminiscent of early Floyd - that era where Gilmore’s not really replaced Syd fully. Bits tread into Van der Graaf Generator territory too. On some parts of Time = Warped all we miss are Hammill’s operatic vocals. What about quoting Ginsberg in (best track) Howl, eh? That prompts a Neanderthal fuzz-out that is a bit Speed Glue & Shinki in places. I’m all for that. But (best of all) there are some very appealing subtle builds up of melody which also pick up on a steady and subtle groove now and again. And this is a refreshing relief; we don’t get any of those 5th rate sub-Godspeed chord progressions. Phew.
I’ve seen Howl Ensemble play and as musicians they look nothing like the sort of band you’d think (after listening to this) they should look like; coming over as a bunch of Heavy Metal escapees (they give it away on Gunslinger). It matters not; probably one of the subliminal reasons why I really like this record when I normally have very little time for post-rock or math-rock. The titles are a bit ‘Rawk’ too; Gunslinger!? I ask you… really. Good stuff though, a bit of a grower this LP, you need to give it some time.