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Haze – Clouds Surround And Breathe | Album Review

Find out what we thought of Haze’s debut album ‘Clouds Surround And Breathe’ right here!

Haze have just released their debut album ‘Clouds Surround And Breathe’. It is made up of a compelling mixture of post hardcore and post rock.

The five-piece from Wolverhampton, UK have only been around since July of 2013 but in that short space of time, they are already set to take the world by storm and we think this album will be their strongest weapon. A predominantly instrumental debut took us by surprise, however we threw all pre-conceptions into the wind and took some time out to have a listen and we were not disappointed.

‘Colure’ gently introduces us to this album with a string of repetitive guitar riffs and a subtle drum beat. An elated haze surrounds all two minutes and thirty eight seconds of this track and with no vocals, we are sent into an almost blissful state of mind, only to be fiercely awoken by ‘I Can’t Help But Get Lost,’ which throws us head first into the hardcore elements yet still keeps us dosed up in a seemingly ongoing state of daze. Vocalist Mark Al-Shemmeri gives a passionate performance and rounds this track off with the perfect amount of spark.

‘Upheaval’ is the third track on the record and one of a handful of sinister beginnings. This particular track gave us our first insight into the darker side of Haze, however following track ‘Morriña’ is quite the opposite, creating a unique little pattern of yin-yang emotions between each song. The subtlety of this song, particularly the introduction with the beautiful inclusion of an acoustic guitar and not much else is our idea of perfect breakfast listening.

‘Forma’ takes elements of previous tracks and merges them into one. We are faced with a simplistic beat and fine guitar part, creating a mixture of both euphoria and hardcore, making this the most diverse track so far. Having said that, ‘Loomer’ was by far the most terrifying five minutes and forty seconds of this album. Reminding us of an empty wild-west town, surrounded by cloud and fog, the inclusion of a vicious cello, distorted guitar and no vocals is both strangely relaxing but equally haunting.

Seven songs in and we’ve reached the track ‘I like Glass’ which could easily be compared to the early works of Dallas Green’s City And Colour. The emotion that surrounds this track is over whelming and replacing Dallas’s melodic vocal with the gritty screams of Mark Al Shemmeri half way through, we can tell that a lot of thought and ardor went into the writing of this album, let alone this track alone.

The same can be said for penultimate track ‘Skies Fluctuate And Fall.’ Taking everything down a few notches and into a different genre completely. In this track we hear some mean guitar riffs and a punchy beat, that are more associated to good old-fashioned rock than to hardcore but it works, giving us a real 360 view of what this band can do. Having three guitarists only strengthens their already impressive range of talents.

Finally, we are led out with full flare with the title track ‘Clouds Surround And Breathe.’ A combination of everything we’ve heard so far. Passion, Fire and the kind of euphoria that is difficult to describe. There’s also a xylophone, who can argue with that.

Up until now, we had never even heard of Haze but with such rare originality and flare, we are behind these newcomers 100% and cannot wait to see where this album is about to take them. Bravo boys.

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