release date: March 1, 2016
There is something amiss in Wisconsin. Or perhaps the opposite forces are at work. More likely, it’s a unique push and pull between the dark and light from which Wyrding pulls their inspiration. Founded by Troy Schafer and Bret Hartl, Wyrding began with a sound that took inspiration from the unique folk/neofolk leanings of Troy’s long-standing project Kinit Her (With Nathaniel Ritter) and melded into a unique take on funeral doom metal. These initial experiments resulted in the two-track Agony in being EP. (Originally released in very limited quantities on Schafer’s Shifting Sands Congregation imprint, and now available on cassette on Small Doses, and as bonus tracks on the CD of this debut album.)
As time passed, Wyrding evolved into a full, five-piece band, and their sound shifted with it. The music became more expansive and epic, and the vocals moved from the whispered growl on Agony in Being to a more crooned, almost operatic style. The results are still very much rooted in funeral doom, and the music is incredibly heavy without being heavy in the traditional metal sense – it relies on emotional mass and space more so than the typical huge distorted riffs.
The seven songs that make up Wyrding’s debut album create the feel of a strange narrative – the plot isn’t always easy to discern, but by the end, you know the band brought you along on a trip riddled with sadness, darkness, and perhaps even a bit of catharsis.
“Wyrding’s hushed music flows over you like a warm blanket, Schafer’s warm baritone voice soaring above fellow bandmates Brian Steele, Kyle Roessler, Bret Hartl and Jerry McDougal’s smooth lugubre. Gone are the overt folk influences of Wyrding’s demo, who have emerged from the cocoon with a sound akin to Benedictine monks performing funeral rites with modern electric instrumentation. Unlike their more conservative funeral doom brethren, Wyrding seeks out the dramatic not only in minimal execution, but minimal sound. They are quiet, unassuming, but are able to portray immensity with their subtle movements.” – Jon Rosenthal, Invisible Oranges
“Wyrding is essential listening, not least because it serves as a forward and upward-looking counterpoint to the neo-traditional efforts of bands like Pallbearer and Bell Witch.” – Evening of Light
The LP version of Wyrding’s deput album is available on red vinyl with black swirl (limited to 100 copies) and standard black vinyl. Both versions are packaged in a matte sleeve with spot varnish with an insert. The CD version is packaged in a six-panel sleeve, and includes the two tracks from the Agony in Being EP.