Amongst other things, our mental state is something that has taken a battering from the effects of the pandemic. For many people, the last two years have been a huge struggle mentally and, in the case of wars, they’ve channelled those struggles into the material for their powerful new album, A Hundred Shivers.

An album as powerful as it is fragile, the twelve songs have been split into four chapters each dealing with its own subject. From forces beyond our control in chapter one, through the nature of our thoughts and disorientation the final chapter, released late in September, dealt with the hugely relevant subject of change. Combined, the four chapters meld together into one powerfully emotional collection of songs. Take “A Fragile Thing” where frontman Rob Vicars has spoken of the song being inspired by the fragility of our state of mind which he hammers home hard as he screams “there is no one in sight to provide some desperate respite.”

With four chapters now combined into one complete piece of work, the end result could be disjointed but there is no sight of any cracks or joins as the themes simply blend into one heartfelt story about fighting your mental demons. Those demons come to the fore in songs like “A Hell Behind My Eyes” and “A Fog of Feeling,” just two highlights from an album built around soaring, abrasive guitars and lyrics poured out into tear-soaked notebooks. Marrying Vicars’ gut-wrenching screams on “I Don’t Feel A Thing” with clean vocals delivering lines like “I’m sinking into the loneliness,” wars is a band that put it all on display for the world to see.

Lyrically at least, A Hundred Shivers explores some powerfully dark thoughts and feelings that wars match with some equally hard-hitting music. To their credit though, given the fragility of the subject matter, wars’ delicate use of melody adds the perfect finishing touch to this clever, complex, powerful and hugely personal display.

A Hundred Shivers Track Listing:

1. So The Soul
2. But The Light Trembles In
3. Grief, They Named It
4. A Fragile Thing
5. (A Ceaseless Sense Of Our Demise)
6. A Hell Behind My Eyes
7. High Art, Low Culture
8. I Don’t Feel A Thing
9. Murmurs
10. A Fog of Feeling
11. Only Monsters
12. As Within, So Without

Run Time: 36:14
Release Date: November 26, 2021
Record Label: A Wolf At Your Door Records

I have an unhealthy obsession with bad horror movies, the song Wanted Dead Or Alive and crap British game shows. I do this not because of the sex, drugs and rock 'n' roll lifestyle it affords me but more because it gives me an excuse to listen to bands that sound like hippos mating.