- Indifferent Rivers Romance End
- Artist: Wreck and Reference
- Format: LP
- Release Date: 7/22/2016
Titled Indifferent Rivers Romance End, the cover of Wreck and Reference's newest album depicts a statue of pre-socratic Greek philosopher Heraclitus tied to a brick and drowned in a river of liquor and dirt. Heraclitus, "the weeping philosopher," found comfort in the uniformity of the world's chaos. Wreck and Reference is not at home in genre conventions; relying on computers, acoustic drums, and voice the band has found an audience with the heavier crowd and fans of the experimental. Indifferent Rivers Romance End is a winding composition of ballads that interrogate the endurance of purpose, love, and change set against a backdrop of disillusionment draining into nihilism. The album sees Wreck and Reference employ the clarity of IDM and the rhythmic flood of trap as an experiment in pop, metal, and noise. Like all Wreck and Reference albums, Indifferent Rivers Romance End was self-recorded, but this time with increased use of digital synthesizers in lieu of samples, creating a greater sense of fluidity and movement. In contrast to past work, Indifferent Rivers Romance End is an album that allows the possibility of change, even the necessity of it, when the self comes to face the inevitability of continued life amidst the construction and destruction of relationships. Originally formed in 2011 by multi-instrumentalists Ignat Frege and Felix Skinner, Wreck and Reference use computers, drums, and vocals to create a sound that is eccentric, captivating, and often unnerving. That same year, the band recorded their first EP, Black Cassette, in a garage, drawing upon the blown out intensity of black metal and the angularity of noise rock, with themes of determinism and Cormac McCarthy-esque isolation. In 2012, their debut full length, Y̶o̶u̶t̶h̶, represented a dramatic expansion of their sonic palette. In deeper, darker tones, Y̶o̶u̶t̶h̶ was a reflection on the opposing forces of dismissal and longing for both the past and the future, questioning the value of life lived and life yet to come. These sounds and themes were pushed further in Wreck and Reference's second full length, Want, in 2014. Described by Pitchfork as having "radical vision" and "boundless experimentation," Want expanded into a darker and more brooding territory, plumbing the depths of isolation, sadness, and hopelessness, as if written from inside a room with only a dimming window into a perfectly callous world.