Monday 2 April 2018

Untold Want/Ostraca/Vril/Coma Regalia - Yarrow 4-Way Split

Labels: Zegema Beach Records/Middle-Man Records/I Corrupt Records
Formats: Vinyl/Digital
Release Date: 04 Sep 2017


1. Untold Want - Nameless/Formless
2. Untold Want - Bright As Ash
3. Untold Want - Soft Veils
4. Untold Want - Second Child
5. Ostraca - Against Decency
6. Ostraca - So Do I
7. Vril - Sacrosanct
8. Vril - Vemodalen
9. Vril - Mirrorshield
10. Coma Regalia - Convince
11. Coma Regalia - Destroy
12. Coma Regalia - Release

Another day another screamo release. Not by design but because I found me some extra time and because I'm a sucker for it. This 4-way split was released in late 2017 (early 2018 if you're talking about the 10" vinyl pressing) and it features four US bands that all present a variation on a theme. The only band on here that I'm truly familiar with is Coma Regalia, but I'm eager to hear Untold Want, Ostraca and Vril as well. Untold Want is from Denver (Colorado), Ostraca is from Richmond (Virginia), Vril is from Los Angeles (California) and Coma Regalia is from Indiana. 

It’s so great to be able to listen to a record that features four like-minded bands, sharing the same passion for the music they play. That’s exactly what happens here on “Yarrow”. Untold Want is up first with four fairly short tracks. Their opener Nameless/Formless pretty much sets their stall out early with a chaotic, abrasive form of screamo and hardcore. They’re in the same vein as bands like SeeYouSpaceCowboy and oh yeah…Vein, but with less of a grinding mentality. That is until Bright As Ash comes along. It initially starts of at a mid-pace, before the band launches into something all the more destructive. Soft Veils follows suit with no real let up but with plenty of great riffs. Their final contribution Second Child features a whole heap of feedback and rabid screams. The rest of the instrumentation is just as chaotic as Untold Want leaves it’s mark planted straight in the middle of your forehead.

Ostraca is up next with two songs. Against Decency picks up where Untold Want left off in the abrasive department, with definitely more of an emo-violence feel. The underlying melody created by the guitars permeates through the noise though and makes for a captivating listen. Their expanded song-writing on second song So Do I is a welcome addition to the record and it suits their sound really well. Quite mesmeric at times. Vril are instantly more of a technical proposition. Their first song Sacrosanct is experimental and leans towards the metallic end of the screamo spectrum. It’s layered with cool guitar melodies and filled with atmosphere. Vemodalen is an interlude that breaks up Vril’s intensity and leads to Mirrorshield, which underlines the subtle old-school approach that they take. Vril is a great find, though as you read this they have changed their name (or are about to) to Nuvolascura.

This record ends with the always frenetic screamo of Coma Regalia. Convince is an angry song that’s full of impact. For such a productive band to write such consistently good songs is incredible. There’s a lesson in here for younger bands. Destroy is punchy and to-the-point, following on from where Convince left off. In fact all three songs sound as though they were conceived as one and then split up (if you know what I mean). Release certainly feels that way and brings this record to a highly charged conclusion.  I hate writing closing pieces for reviews like this, as I don’t want to sound pretentious. If you like (proper) screamo/violence and you want to take a chance, you could do far far worse than to pick this up. Every song is great and each band has their own personality. 

You can stream "Yarrow" below:-

Physical copies can be purchased from the labels below:-

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