Leeds trio Wiht are already no more at the time of writing this review, they split last year after a three year stint playing together and on the strength of this posthumous release they burned very brightly for that short span together.
Being honest, the press release doesn't really instil one with confidence - "an epic, instrumental style" is all fine and dandy but then describing it as "a two song, 33-minute concept piece taking influence thematically, from the subjugation of the North of England by William the Conqueror in the 11th century, it tells the troubled history of Doomsday-era Yorkshire" had me sucking air through my teeth and grimacing. However, I am happy to report that the dry faux celtic-type metallic rock with cheesy lyrics I was expecting failed to show up and instead what did was a darkly atmospheric and yes, wholly epic instrumental piece full of subtle psych inspired moments and doomy, expansive guitars all topped with a creamy production (occasionally dipped in scuzz).
The Harrowing Of The North is a real pleasure - think ISIS for depth and brutality and Godspeed and their ilk for scope and post-rock style builds to intense climaxes - yes, of course they're obvious choices but you get the idea immediately. The eponymously titled 20 minute opener is split into several parts and ranges from a bombastic beginning section complete with heavy duty riffage to lighter toned latter stages which have an atmospheric and compelling psych feel (still with those chunky riffs cohesively threaded throughout). Even though the three tracks are pretty lengthy (one is a bonus track) it actually still doesn't feel like a long record, in fact it's so compelling and all encompassing that it flies past and you immediately feel the need to hit play again.