Thursday 23 April 2015

Irk/Wren - Split


1. Irk - You Sound Like My Ex-Wife
2. Irk - A Dead Elephant
3. Irk - Life Pervert
4. Irk - Cibo Per Gattini
5. Wren - Arise
6. Wren - Before The Great Silence
7. Wren - An Approach

Here's my second original review, leading up the this weekend's No Fun Intended festival. It'll also be my last review before until at least next Monday, so there will be sometime for you all to catch up! The only thing that troubled me when thinking about this review was that Irk are probably going to be only band I can catch on Saturday, due to family commitments. I wish I could stay for the whole of Saturday but I messed up. Some background on the bands then; Irk are a trio from Leeds who play noisy rock type stuff with heaviness thrown in. Wren are from London and play down-tempo metal, sludge and a whole lot more. This should be great.

Irk begins with a bag full of loud riffs. You Sound Like My Ex-Wife is filled with off-kilter rhythms, semi-clean vox/screams and bass, lots of bass. The vocals occasional remind me of Chino Moreno in a spaced-out and lazy kind of way. The next couple of songs from Irk are much shorter. A Dead Elephant is a brief and violent slab of noise, but one filled with arty progression. Life Pervert is a spoken-word song that sits atop of buzzing bass that leads into their last offering, Cibo Per Gattini. They’re back to their energetic and cathartic best here. Those full-on verses are punctuated by a spoken-word passage and jazz-laden instrumentation during the mid-section, before naturally evolving to heaviness some more. Irk is a fantastic advert for the diversity and originality that exists in Leeds musically.  Wren’s side of the split features three songs. They feel more menacing compared to the fraught shapes of Irk. Arise leans more toward post-metal and droning sludge instead, allowing the song to crescendo mid-way through. The instrumental build-up felt in Arise leads you to Before The Great Silence, which is where the band really come alive. Reminding me of Scandinavian band Kollwitz and Leeds’ own Mausoleion in it’s delivery. It’s massive but also catchy. The same can be said for closing song An Approach. It takes their post-metal stomp and magnifies it. The use of dramatic instrumental structure in the song makes it a fitting way to end the split. I’m a big fan of split releases, which is something I’ve said many times. Both Irk and Wren operate in different niches but work together so well. There’s no excuse for ignoring either of these bands. 

Stream the split here:-

It's also available to stream via Wren's bandcamp page in full, along with both bands offering digital downloads -

I don't think the split has been released physically yet, so someone really needs to do that!

Irk Facebook -
Wren Facebook -

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