Far off in Sweden, under pristine, snow-swept fields that seem to extend off into an endless night, lies a deep well of no-holds-barred, scorched-earth violence. This gorgeous and terrible contrast has come to define Swedish metal, and it’s clearly a huge influence on the umlauted Peterborough progressive metal band Hjärna Waves.
The band have cheekily defined their genre as ‘ambidjenthall’—integrating ambient soundscapes, Meshuggah-like ‘djent’ guitar, and Vildhjarta’s ‘thall.’ The result is frenetic and epic in scope, with heavy and lurching guitar lines, a thumping rhythm section, and vocals that swerve unhinged between death growls and raw screaming. It’s at once assaultive and expansive, forever teetering on the edge of beautiful and atmospheric, before reeling back into rage and destruction.
Hjärna Waves have a full-length yet to come, but with this EP, they are confidently asserting their place in the local heavy scene.
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Hjärna Waves’ The Tower is available for purchase on Bandcamp.
All images courtesy the artist.