HYMNS is an alternative rock band that was formed in London at the beginning of 2016. The line-up currently consists of Oliver Hooper (lead vocalist/guitarist), Giorgio Compagnone (bass guitarist/backing vocalist), Matthew Ash (guitarist) and Ben Edwards (drummer).
HYMNS flourish in the ethereal, surreal and ambient on their newest effort The London EP. Their sonic landscape takes its initial form on the opener entitled “London.” Queens of the Stone Age-esque vocals find themselves melded with punchy guitar chords and a reverberating lead guitar arpeggio. Yet this is no tribute band; HYMNS bring an alternative, melodic and almost pop-fueled sensibility to a brutal, pulsing rock anthem. This is an electrifying start to a short effort.
“Masquerade” shifts the EP into an alternate dimension. Both plucky and reverberating guitars, choppy drums and throbbing synth underpin Hooper’s most emotive performance of the three tracks. The chorus is perhaps the biggest musical triumph of the EP. Melodic, beautiful desperation passes through the words: “It doesn’t really matter what we say or do / It’s true / When life becomes a read-through / It’s time to search for pastures new.”
“Vessels” returns to the indie-rock, power-chord success of the initial track. Fans of The Editors may appreciate the vocal performance present here, as elements of that same tone, range and emotion shine through during the “Vessels” chorus. It is a strong close to a strong EP, though perhaps not quite as exhilarating as the first two tracks. That is not to criticize the song, however it is intended more as praise towards the rest of the EP.
Whilst comprising of merely three tracks, The London EP offers listeners a sufficiently-succulent taster of the flavor that is to come from HYMNS in the future. It is hard to say where exactly they might go, based purely on this short effort, but they could benefit from striving to evolve their sound into something entirely new and unheard. However, I have no doubt that HYMNS could reach dizzying musical heights in the future.
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