We often think of EPs as preludes to something greater, a chance for a band to lay out their stock or play around with some new ideas, but with the right tracks a short release can be just as impactful as a full-length. This much is proven true on Reprieve, the brand new EP from Hull four-piece Still. Though comprising just three tracks, it manages to fit some bold ideas into its shorter runtime, the band further exploring and expanding the sound they adopted on their 2017 demo Karin.
Reprieve spends the majority of its time assaulting the listener’s senses with a unique strain of extremity that draws from the likes of sludge, black metal and hardcore, but amongst the doom and gloom is a glimmer of hope in the momentary glimpses of ambient post-metal. Opener ‘Last’ introduces itself slowly as it builds a gentle, cinematic atmosphere, but the floor gives out from under you when the sludgy riffs instantly drag the release into the murk. It’d be easy to expect more of the same on track two, but whilst the malevolent aura is maintained, the title-track is a more dynamic affair, switching styles on a dime as it places you first amongst ominous droning guitars before thrusting you headfirst into the eye of a maelstrom of blackened brutality halfway through. Closer ‘Beggars’ is more forthright in its evil intentions, kicking off in top gear and yet somehow finding room to descend further into chaos as it develops.
We’re absolutely chuffed to be able to bring you the stream of such a strong release from a promising band, but alongside the audio we’ve also got three fantastically shot live videos created by Gary Mitchell. Scroll on to hear the EP and see the videos!
Reprieve is out 22nd November on Trepanation Recordings. Order here.
Words: George Parr