‘Hex’, the debut EP from Birmingham’s Creature, is a chilling exercise in chaotic brevity. Clocking in at a little over seven minutes, these four brief tracks coalesce into a dizzying, cathartic experience, akin to having a fistfight with demons of the underworld whilst on a merry-go-round.
The first obvious point to mention is the clear Converge influence. It’s all there, in the frenetic guitar work; spasming from dissonant chords to southern-tinged groove to melancholic, post-hardcore melodies all within the span of ten seconds or so. The drums are equally explosive with rapid-fire fills, and vocals that are unnervingly shrill one minute, then inaudibly guttural the next.
Once you move past the comparisons, and scratch beneath the service, the true intent of the trio is evident. The group are pushing the melodious hardcore/math/grind that Converge frontman Jacob Bannon has continued to expose through his exceptional label, Deathwish, Inc.. Bands like Birds In Row and Loma Prieta instantly spring to mind when considering the complex, layered, and ultimately rewarding style with which Creature have chosen to express themselves.
Viewing the group’s output as contribution to an ever-expanding scene, rather than simply “the UK’s answer to Converge“, is paramount to appreciating just how excellent they are. The tracks are vicious and frightening, yet bear a keen sense of positivity and melody buried beneath the cacophony. The lyrics tiptoe between a gothic romanticism; invoking occult images of witchcraft, and necromancy, whilst using the more poetic phrasing to tell relatable stories of betrayal and disillusionment. Songs with such direct messages have rarely been steeped in such darkened, Lovecraftian imagery.
For a four-track, seven-minute debut EP, Creature have made far more of a statement than any new band should have the ability to in so little time. To begin with such a commanding, and genuinely remarkable level of authority speaks volumes to the precise vision of the group. The grim, chaotic, and frankly arresting world the trio conjure so well couldn’t look any brighter.
Lover of choons, flums, bukes and such. I like making music. I like writing about music. I like burgers and emo-trap. Also suffer from a slight case of knowitallism. I wish every song had a breakdown.