Ex People - Bird album review

Insightful, eccentric sludge with a deeply dark underbelly

Cover art for Ex People - Bird album

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With a multifarious past in riot grrrl and noise bands, Ex People were never going to be entirely without edge. Although superficially rooted in sludge and doom, this London-based quartet use their hypnotic, propulsive riffs and air of pot-enlightened obstinacy to facilitate some authentic lyrical insights in a genre that generally prefers to languish in a fog of arcane daftness. In particular, The Host’s feverish exploration of domestic violence resounds with real-world distress, vocalist Laura’s ghostly delivery made all the more powerful by the glutinous space rock barrage erupting around her. With shades of Melvins and Sleater Kinney peppering the bruising likes of Without, Dread and the perversely catchy You Creep, this is far from a perfunctory stoner scamper, but Ex People’s eccentricities never dwarf the thunderous, gritty power of those overdriven guitars.

Dom Lawson

Dom Lawson has been writing for Metal Hammer and Prog for over 14 years and is extremely fond of heavy metal, progressive rock, coffee and snooker. He also contributes to The Guardian, Classic Rock, Bravewords and Blabbermouth and has previously written for Kerrang! magazine in the mid-2000s.