With echoes of British Sea Power, Fugazi, Sunny Day Real Estate, early U2, and even Big Country, Motor City quartet the Holy Fire have crafted a visceral and desolate EP that's as bloody-sleeved passionate as it is post-rock chilly. "Lift me off/above torn skies and the 401," sings Sean Hoen on "Lift Off Message," an image that anyone who's spent time on the particular stretch of highway that connects Toronto and Detroit understands with weary precision. The sheer vastness, peppered with Tim Hortons, decomposing deer carcasses, and exit ramps that virtually disappear into the flat Ontario landscape, has had a palatable effect on the group's sense of auditory space. The defeated urgency of "In Signs" ("If you want to kill the past/you better kill it's ghost"), the false comforts endured by the unwavering homebody ("Sleeping, Screaming Boy"), the stalker's systematic need for a second chance ("I Heard Your Song"), and the inevitable chore of finally deciding to break free from the gray ("Outside the Mercury") are all byproducts of the region, and the Holy Fire have found that the only true road to catharsis is to play and sing like hell about it.
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AllMusic Review by James Christopher Monger