New Artist Find: The Howling


There’s a melancholy feeling I get when sitting at the edge of the water as night falls, staring out into blank, empty space – that feeling is encapsulated perfectly by innovative new artist, The Howling. They capture that indescribable dissatisfaction with the size of yourself – they make you feel small and then build you up again. Walking a tight-rope between Radiohead knockoff and forward-thinking ambient innovators, The Howling put together an interesting experiment on their newest 3-song EP, Shortline.

The Howling is comprised of Frank Wiedemann, half of the duo Âme, and Ry Cumming, an Aussie artist currently based out of LA. Their partnership started last summer with the release of their collaboration “Howling.”

Now that collaboration has grown into an extended partnership, and the release of Shortline marks the culmination of that partnership in The Howling.

The first and eponymous track on the EP, “Shortline,” is a haunting, plodding track with an equally evocative and abstruse video to accompany it.

Driven by delicate guitar work and rhythm like a wavering heartbeat, “Shortline” is almost intangibly beautiful.

Similar to “Shortline” but still distinctly different is the track “Litmus.” This song marches along, steadily churning out droll phrases and interesting bits and pieces. If “Shortline” is black and white then “Litmus” is sepia tone -- cousins in color, or the lack thereof. It’s a welcome departure from the overwhelming nature of a lot of modern electronic music; it’s true chill out music.

“Litmus” paints its picture in high falsetto and deliberate rhythm. It almost makes me antsy, particularly the outro section that sounds like a submarine sinking.

This is “Litmus.”

The Howling exist in the universe of less-is-more. Their music is an exercise in scarcity.

That’s not to say that I don’t find The Howling interesting -- far from it. They’re interesting and unnerving and beautiful the way that a snow covered field is beautiful -- brilliant in their paucity.

The Howling are not the most accessible new artist we’ve come across lately. Their music is sparse and different and it took a second to really get into it. It’s worth the effort, though, and I think it’s safe to expect big things from The Howling.