At just fourteen minutes long, ‘Cycles’ takes WOLVES in so many directions it proves difficult to keep up. Opener ‘Divide’ follows a more straightforward hardcore punk route, but it’s not until the one and a half minute mark that the track breaks – the welcoming clean vocals deliver an atmosphere which permeates throughout the remainder of the song. The unexpected and sudden shift in the midst of the song proves indicative of the following three tracks; each acting as a standalone in terms of style and delivery.
Despite those stylistic changes, there’s not a momentous distinction between the styles, which helps to maintain minimal structure as the EP ominously drones through various switches between down-tempo guitar slugging to melodious vocals and ferocious screaming. Each of the four songs on offer has its foundations in generic hardcore, yet the initial pace of the opener is soon lost on ‘Courage Breaker’ and ‘Linger’. The final track ‘Dead Weight’ turns the tempo and brutality to the highest level on the EP, but by following more doom inspired tracks it feels a little misplaced.
‘Cycles’ displays all the elements of a band who are destined for bigger things, yet acts as a shining example of a band who are simply attempting too much at once. As a full-length, WOLVES may be able to get away with and would likely to benefit from it, but ‘Cycles’ plays like an amuse-bouche of the music world – there are a lot of exciting elements on offer, yet not enough to satisfy a healthy appetite.