Halina Heron & Ryan Roth – “The Yawhg EP” Review

Yawhg coverThe rather depressing but fantastic The Yawhg is a spiraling tale of woe that is accentuated with a suitably miserable score. The folksy drones of Halina Heron and Ryan Roth are split four tracks a piece for the EP which has a sullen charm to it.

Halina Heron’s quartet opens with “(oceans)” which sounds like it’s being played through a room speaker. It’s acoustic guitar, minimal piano and oohs interplay with Halina’s voice to create something downtrodden and sombre. The hiss sounds like a permanent rain in the background. “An evergreen is forever green/until it dies, of course” is an acoustic guitar piece at stays on a single chord and changes one finger notes around it on the guitar. It’s oppressive and understated and reminds me of Lisa Germano. “Poem” see’s Halina’s voice return but the track itself isn’t as catchy as anything else around it and is blown away by the amazing “Shadows” which has a more angelic echo to the voice and guitar. It’s such a simple melody but it’s achingly beautiful in its execution.

Ryan Roth’s half kicks off with “Dawn of the 4th Week” which takes a section of the second track and add’s a small synth over the top. “Dawn of the 5th Week” then strips away the guitar and leaves a sombre synth string track to slowly play minor keys. “Dawn of the 6th Week” then takes those strings and pads them out from its thin predecessors into a much better, fully formed drama piece. The EP closes with “Omega” which is a discordant ambience with Ryan’s voice drifting in and out of it. It’s not in tune particularly but that adds to the eerie charm of the rumbling piano like ambience because it sounds like animal moans in the fog.

A beautiful 20 minutes of music for anyone whom enjoys a bit of downbeat folk or acoustic singer/songwriter stuff along with game music. It’s Halina’s work that shines, but Roth’s closing track shows he can play with Silent Hill-esque ambience too.

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Categories: acoustic, composer, doom folk, folk, game music, guitar, indie, music, review, singer songwriter, VGM

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