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Sieben - The Line and the Hook

The Line and the Hook is the second full-length release from Sieben, a duo consisting of Matt and Jane Howden. Matt Howden is perhaps the most prolific artist currently residing on the World Serpent roster. Aside from Sieben, Matt Howden is a solo artist; violinist and producer for Sol Invictus; studio svengali of his own Redroom studio. The Line and The Hook forsakes much of the ethereal sound of Sieben's acclaimed debut, Forbid The Sun's Escape, recorded as a trio with Sally Doherty (of the Sumacs, and Sol Invictus) for a darker more aggressive sound based around solid bass throb and passionate drumming. Yet it's Howden's layering of additional instruments that makes The Line and the Hook so compelling; the soaring and surging violin, sweeping strings and upfront vocalisations paired with Jane's softer voice. Howden excels as a composer and The Line and The Hook slips effortlessly from intensity to something more atmospheric and restrained. The overall tone is sombre and melancholic reflecting the album's war based theme. 'Christmas 1914' is particularly poignant with lyrics culled from an anthology of poetry from his father, or 'Völkerschlachtdenkmal' which draws its inspiration from the battle monument in Leipzig, while 'Northern Lights' reflects the impermanence of life. The Line and The Hook, like the reappraisal of 'Second Witchwords' from Forbid The Sun's Escape, is a hugely moving and passionate piece of work that really does deserve your attention. Compulsion online interviewed Matt Howden when his first solo album Intimate and Obstinate was released. For more information contact