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Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada | INDIE

Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada | INDIE
Band Rock Alternative


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This band has not uploaded any videos



"The band is on fire"

Fen's Of Losing Interest reveals that in the two years since their last release, 2010's Trails Out of the Gloom, the band haven't been standing still. This album is a significant leap forward in terms of songwriting, vocal adventure, and instrumental interplay. Everything hinted at in the band's three previous releases seems now realized.

The band's sound has metabolized from having prog-rock, metal, and funky folk leanings to being a seamless blend of styles and sophisticated structures. Where previously there may have been a bit too much effort in stylistic juxtaposition, the band now wears their near limitless diversity like a second skin.

From a whip start of tightly meshed metal, Riddled eases into a mid-tempo groove as frontman Doug Harrison sings smoothly melodic verses over a steady beat that has me fondly remembering the slightly off kilter drum work that made The Police such a winner. A great drummer can make a band great, and there's no doubt that Nando Polesel is a great drummer. Three minutes in and the band throw off convention and unleashes some mighty prog/metal fury. Most generally the fusion of metal and progressive rock makes me a bit seasick, but this is smooth sailing all the way. A great kickstart.

Extremely musical drummers can make bands, and I make no bones about the fact that everything on display here is top notch, and while there's no shortage of musical musculature to be found, the crafty drumming keeps this way above the din of today's rock. Of Losing Interest is a song that covers a tremendous amount of ground - it's a perfect example of the band's growth and maturity. This is wickedly complex, but it never loses the listener.

Nice For Three Days is a huge slab of powerful rock, and its bellicose crunch immense, but it stays solid and doesn't sound harsh, nor muddy. It sucks you in to a wind tunnel of molten metal and vocals that seem to evoke pleasant memories of the spirit of Freddie Mercury. Muscular and melodic - not an easy combination, and Fen are doing it quite well and making it sound very natural.

Slinky sophistication is found all across this disc, and on A Long Line everyone is on point playing their parts - the parts sit well together, but are quite distinct on their own. The band's longtime producer Mike Southworth pulls great performances out of Fen, and supplies an excellent job of engineering and mixing. No lock step repetition, endless unison parts that make such a mess of so much modern rock. The prog portion of this tune is a splendid example of the possibilities when mixed with metal.

Fen is a great example of what happens when a band is allowed to develop - this is their fifth long player, and it shows that the group now has a great sixth sense when it comes to instrumental interplay, and Harrison's vocals are never at odds with the music. In an age in which success is a do or die matter, it's a joy to hear what can happen to a band when it is allowed to mature naturally.

Light Up The End slows things down with a pastoral acoustic guitar intro that soon gives way to some great dynamic interplay that should have fans of bands like King Crimson, Iron Maiden, and Judas Priest singing high praises for modern days. Modern metal that delivers hope and beauty instead of constant angst and anger is a breath of needed fresh air. Classic rock enthusiasts will have no trouble seeing the path from the previous generation to 2012 with this record.

Pilot Planet is a simmering stew that connects the dots of rock history perhaps more successfully than any band has yet accomplished. I hear sonic references that take me from hard rock, heavy metal, progressive rock, jazz fusion, and even some reminders that new wave music had some heavy hitters - this record sounds like today, but it doesn't alienate, or discourage connections to the past history of rock. So often, modern rock sounds so at arms with its past that one wonders, why the hostility? Fen is cutting edge, but when they break out an incredible rock riff like the one that rings in Snake Path you appreciate their nod to history - it's a cinematic masterpiece in the mold of the best of Judas Priest in the ways of majesty and imagination with all the dynamics of very sophisticated modern music.

Fen has finally come completely together as a band, and Of Losing Interest is their first major league record. Hopefully, this record allows the band to tour widely and to continue this stint of growth. The band is on fire - the guitar work of Harrison and Sam Levin is exciting, imaginative, and sonically satisfying. Harrison's vocals and melodies have improved significantly, bassist Jeff Caron is much, much more than a low end roar - his parts are great, his tone is awesome. However, as great as all the performances and performers are on this disc, drummer Nando Polesel takes this record from very good to near classic. Hats off to the whole band, and to Ripple Music, nice job fellows.

Fen - Of Losing Interest: Release Date - August 14th

Thanks to Fen, and Ripple Music. - Rock Guitar Daily With Tony Conley

"a robust and energetic beast as eclectic as you could wish and with muscles rippling and twisting with eagerness"

From initially being an intriguing and pleasing presence in the ear to becoming a persistent and incessant returnee long after its departure, Of Losing Interest the new album from Fen is a thriving infection gone wild. Given the chance and deserved attention the album becomes a niggling treat for the psyche with its contagion of progressive melodic enterprise, insatiable rock n roll hooks, and mesmeric shadows. It is a release which expectations assumed would be decent going by recent history and reality shows is something far more impressive and deeply pleasing. It is an essential investigation for all which just falls short of making album of the year claims.

Of Losing Interest is the fifth album from the quartet from British Columbia which formed in 1998, and the second for Ripple Music. Previous album of 2010 Trails Out Of Gloom was the introduction for many of us to the sounds of the band, the critically acclaimed album a melancholic progressive weave to unsettle and ignite the senses. The new release is said to have taken its breath from further back in the history of the band, its heart returning to the more metallic and heavier aspects of early Fen. If that is so is for those acquainted with their first trio of albums to confirm but Of Losing Interest is certainly a robust and energetic beast as eclectic as you could wish and with muscles rippling and twisting with eagerness. It does not neglect its progressive imagination either and delivers lyrics and sounds wrapped tightly in the darkest shadows the band loves to frequent.

The album brings together a band line up first assembled in 1999 of vocalist/guitarist Doug Harrison, lead guitarist Sam Levin, bassist Jeff Caron, and Nando Polesel on drums. The foursome combine upon Of Losing Interest to offer nine tracks which thump the senses into eager submission whilst hypnotising them with a technical prowess and melodic invention which often leaves a shortage of breath in its wake. It inspires and thrills constantly to make the near forty minutes in its company only ever rewarding.

The album opens with Riddled and immediately ruffles the ear with explosive metallic riffs. It then settles into a melodic gait with the vocals of Harrison weaving his tones and words with a sure elegance whilst the guitars stroke the atmosphere with gentle imaginative invention. The beats of Polesel are strong though give the impression of a beast just waiting to burst from the cage the gentler stroll of the song allows whilst the bass of Caron stalks and prowls with menace and attitude. As the track evolves it throws of its ties to create a storming attack of sprawling riffs and inciteful rhythms. It is an outstanding start which immediately shows the intent and turn of direction in the sound of the band.

The title track saunters in next with further addiction making sounds and intent. Bringing a Tool like craft into a fusion of melodic enterprise and barbed hooks which would not be out of place in Soundgarden or early Bush compositions, the song lights up all the right spots inside and to be honest as enjoyable as their previous album was there is already the strongest feeling that this is where the band need to be, the sounds and songwriting so imaginative and vibrant.

Every song borders perfection but some rise to greater heights than others for personal taste, the first being Nice For Three Days with its bruising charm. It is an impactful distillery of bristling energies and caustic melodic rubs which leaves one gasping in delight. Imagine the feistiness stripped from the likes Mondo Generator and Foo Fighters and given extra volts of Kyuss attitude and you get Fen on this excellent song.

The explosive multi faceted The Glove takes one to greater plateaus next with its slightly Dog Fashion Disco spiced shifting interactive play for the senses. The song is an exploration of greedy riffs and teasing melodic manipulation which excites on every level. Drunken Relief and the closing Snake Path again leave one with raging fires of pleasure inside, the first being a dark weave of creative lyrics and oppressive yet incendiary sounds. The song one is magnetic, its shadowed heart nightmarish whilst fully compulsive. The final song leaves one wonderfully agitated with its unrelenting catchiness and irresistible energy. It is arguably the least involved song on the album but as deeply infectious and warmly inviting as any.

If the likes of Tool, Incubus, Porcupine Tree, Soundgarden do it for you than Fen and Of Losing Interest is a must. The album offers so much more though that all will find plenty of pleasure within its walls, it is melodic rock at its best. - The Ringmaster Review

"strong song writing lies at the core of Fen’s sound"

PROG!!! For most rock music fans if you utter this word to them it will make them recoil in horror…like shouting “BACON” in a synagogue!!! If you’re still reading this after that initial outburst the chances are you’re probably partial to some tricksy time changes, obscure lyrics and noodly instrumentation. Read on my friend.

“Of Losing Interest” is the follow up to Fen’s 2010 release “Trails Out Of Gloom”. Having never heard the band’s previous albums prior to “Trails Out Of Gloom” I understand that album was something of a departure showcasing the band’s quieter, darker side with judicious use of acoustic guitars and delicate melodies. For this follow up the band are casting no doubt on the fact that they are, first and foremost, a heavy rock band. I found that previous album to be an engaging, heartfelt and emotional listen so was intrigued to see how I would react to Fen when they’re ripping it up.

Fen go for the throat from the off on “Riddled” which kicks off with a biting, thrash fuelled riff before taking the pace down for the verses and allowing Doug Harrison’s uber clean vocals to take charge. Initial impressions are that Fen are the natural successors to the joint thrones of Rush and Tool. Naturally the track is sufficiently laden with tempo and mood shifts…and plenty of notes but the transitions never feel forced and the song writing flows organically. The title track is up next and allows a little more groove to enter the mix and a catchy melody from Harrison that shows that strong song writing lies at the core of Fen’s sound over and above technical trickery. Far from jumping all over the place the song places a central riff at the heart of the song and works around it with shifts in mood.

“Nice For Three Days” adopts a heavier, almost stoner like loping groove and riff but the real sting is when the chorus kicks in with an avant garde melody that brings to mind 70’s prog popsters Sparks. Despite its jarring melody the chorus does deliver a killer, memorable hook that stands out from the album like a pair of bulldog’s balls. If this was the only few bars of music Fen had ever penned they would have reason to be justifiably proud!!! The band dip their toes into alternative grunge territory on the next track “A Long Line” which is far more straight forward and suitably angst ridden to hold its own with some of Seattle’s finest. It shows that Fen are able to ease back on the excesses and keep things simple…in relative terms at least.

Things go distinctly odder on “The Glove” with its twisting, weaving riff, neurotic vocals and Michael Jackson referencing lyrics. Even amongst the maelstrom of weirdness however Fen are capable of pulling a strong chorus out of the bag…overt notiness is fine but the band know you still need a hook, something people will remember after the album is done and dusted.

“Drunken Relief” doesn’t quite capture the imagination in the same way as its predecessors. It’s a decent enough song but so far is the weakest element that they have delivered and offers nothing new to the formula they have now established and by the mid point I kind of find myself waiting to see what will come up next. I am, however, being overly picky and most albums do have inconsistencies.

Fen return to the sound of their previous album on “Light Up The End” which drifts along with a much cleaner sound and a more sedate and sombre melody. In amongst the relative craziness of the rest of the album this track represents a welcome change of pace and showcases the band’s true song writing skills. Even when Fen crank the amps half way through they pull back from the brink of excess to allow the song to shine through. “Pilot Plant” kicks off with a similar vibe before amping up in epic style with Doug Harrison showcasing an almost Peter Gabriel-esque vocal. In fact there is a distinct whiff of early Genesis about this track (when they were good and Phil Collins knew his place was behind the kit!!!), albeit instilled with a modern metal sensibility. Had this track been driven by Melotron instead of guitars it may have sat happily on “The Lamb Lies Down On Broadway”.

The albums comes to a conclusion on the tight and riffy “Snake Path” that once again features a stellar chorus ad has an undeniable energy and flow to end on a high note though I can’t help feeling swapping the last two tracks on this album around would have given a greater flow and allowed the album to finish on a more emotional note.

The question is, which version of Fen do I prefer? Do I prefer the pastoral prog troubadours of the previous album or the tightly coiled prog metal titans of their current guise? It’s a tough call, both albums are extremely strong but there is something about the emotional depth of “Trails Out Of Gloom” that kind of pips this album to the post for me. Despite the undeniable strength of this album its clinical and concise nature just falls short in grabbing me by the heart and appeals more to my head…and I prefer my music to elicit an emotional response. That said, this is still an album full of strong songs and exceptional musicianship and worthy of investigation by anyone who is keen to investigate music beyond the first twelve bars!!! - The Sleeping Shaman

"Every song is a highlight"

‘Of losing interest’ is already the 5th album of the Vancouver, Canada based band FEN and the 2nd we review within a short time frame, because earlier in 2012 we reviewed the band’s previous album ‘Trails out of gloom’ (see http://www.angelfire.com/ma/strutteraor/HOTNEWREVIEWS181.htm ). Now they are back with a stunning new album titled ‘Of losing interest’, which musically goes into a very high quality Progressive Rock/Metal direction. It is especially thanks to the superb vocalwork of singer DOUG HARRISON that FEN’s music is lifted way above other bands in this extensive genre called Prog. The music is pure Progrock with Metalish guitarriffs, but very accessible and sounding like a mixture between ENCHANT, 3, COHEED AND CAMBRIA, RUSH and PORCUPINE TREE, with a bit of KING’S X. The band was formed way back in 1998 and already their previous releases made a clear impact due to the high quality displayed on those albums, but somehow this new CD (out in mid August 2012) might become their big break in the progworld! The guitarwork is also very impressive and so are the melodies of each of the 9 included tracks. Every song is a highlight, but the titletrack is an instant hit for anyone who is into Prog! Check them out at: www.fenmusic.ca

(Points: 8.6 out of 10) - Strutter Magazine

"Innovation and Aggressive"

"The band has really found a great balance here. I admire bands that aren’t afraid to mix it up, and especially on a progressive scale like this, FEN seems to understand how music has no boundaries." - (((Headbang Here)))

"No Shortage of Drama"

"A collection of melancholic, graceful, sincere melodies, in the vein of some of what Opeth reaches toward from time to time, but more in line with Judgement-era Anathema in its scope and casual straddling of the borders between different aspects of its sound, able to switch from heaviness to a more subtle presentation as smoothly as going one measure to the next. Sure to win many friends among prog-heads out there looking for something in a wistful, contemplative vein." - The Obelisk

"A Great Modern Sounding Band"

"The music is largely acoustic based for a majority of the album. That’s not to say that FEN can’t get up and rock it out, it’s just that the acoustic, dark and moody vibe dominates the disc. FIND THAT ONE, which features a fantastic lyric that will swirl around your head for days. Special mentions must also go to THE WORLD IS YOUNG and END OF THE DREAM, two songs that will mesmerize you for days on end. If you are a fan of bands like TOOL, PORCUPINE TREE or even the softer elements of OPETH, do not hesitate to check out this new release from FEN, hopefully you will be as pleasantly surprised as I was. TRAILS OUT OF GLOOM is a very enjoyable album to listen to from start to finish." - My Global Mind

"Balanced and Well Crafted Songs"

"This is surely the Progressive Rock/Metal album of the year! The band has managed to craft 9 Progressive Rock/Metal anthems unlike many bands are able to do these days." - Infernal Masquerade Webzine

"Ultimately Accessible"

"Commentary pales in light of a listen to Trails Out of Gloom. This album is deceptively entertaining even with its despondent weight, and would suggest that it may become strangely addictive after several listens." - Dangerdog

"Focused and Powerful"

"Trails Out of Gloom is absolutely phenomenal, even with around seven albums in my queue to review, I still don’t want to take this album out of my stereo." - Imagine Echoes

"A Different Kind of Heavy"

"WOW!! Every now and then you roll across a CD that just affects your soul in a way that is both disturbing and pleasing. You find yourself listening to it over and over and with every repeat listening, a deep trance like feeling washes over you. Songs seem to flow, as you find yourself adrift in a collection of Progressive Rock filled aggressively dark, brooding and hauntingly majestic material that you will find difficult to put down. This is what Vancouver, B.C. band, Fen will do to you." "Fen delivers a different type of "heavy" with Trails Out of Gloom, one that is dank and opaque, with plenty of texture and substance that requires complete digestion for your optimum pleasure. This is very much like a classic '70's Prog Rock record that contains immensely crafted songs with excellently well written lyrics that also allows for the musical interludes to not be self indulgent, but rather an integral piece of the pie. There are no 12 minute overkill pieces here, but rather 6 minute voyages into remarkableness. And remarkable this CD is. This CD will impact you immediately, but the true brilliance of Trails Out of Gloom comes from further absorption. This is a stellar release. " - Sea of Tranquility

"An Absinthe-Fueled Dream"

"An absinthe-fueled dream. The music is dark, the lyrics darker still, and the delivery of such is like sipping from la fée verte by candlelight. If you can’t tell by now, I really like this, and encourage you to check Fen out! Where Agalloch retreats into nature for answers, Fen retreats into the self; the end result is a far more incisive, frightening degree of personal darkness. Founder Doug Harrison’s vocals ooze that personal pain and anguish with every syllable. " - Bill's Prog Blog

"A Compliment of Dark and Light"

"A rich and emotional ride into alternative heavy rock territories. A different type of heavy-- an emotional, dark, brooding heavy that evokes prime Alice in Chains and Tool with maybe a nod to bands such as Opeth and Anathema. Acoustic guitars pepper the whole album and add a beautiful counterpoint to the heavier moments such as tracks like "The World is Young" which switches from muscular despondency to delicate introspection. For every soaring vocal melody and ethereal guitar passage there is an equally heavy wall of doom waiting to explode. If this is prog it's prog in the classic sense where the song remains at the core of the sound over musical excess. this is a remarkable album should you wish to remove yourself from your comfort zone and experience a different kind of heavy. Absorb it then listen again as repeated listens reveal the true depth here." - Sleeping Shaman

"A Listeners Guide Through Mood Swings"

"I'm not sure that I'll do justice to this release. Vancouver's Fen effortlessly create smooth as silk melodies that will mesmerize your senses then grind out heavy, semi-fuzzed out passages with the same passion and skill. It's not just that they are creating moods, but rather that they are guiding them and us. Perhaps the band's greatest asset is their ability to get so much out of every step they take. Each note, beat and word that Fen create all have a purpose and as a listener you will feel that. They are great at constructing and building these simple pieces together to make fantastic songs that unfold like masterful stories. Indeed this album is a grower. I liked it on the first play, but definitely like it more on each play. With each play I discovered more and more reasons to enjoy "Trails out of Gloom" - Heavy Metal Time Machine

"Captivating Sounds of Wonderment"

"Opening with the title track, an acoustic, folk-inflected lament, there are elements of Opeth in the stunning guitar playing, while the lush, warm tones recall latter-day Anathema although vocalist Doug Harrison has a wider vocal range than most, ranging from a stunning falsetto to the sombre tones more traditionally associated with this type of music. The production is top notch too, with the guitars kicking in with surprising depth and clarity. Hints of Porcupine Tree as well as Soundgarden’s epic, psychedelic rock. It’s quite a ride, with the band showcasing a remarkable grip of dynamics, allowing the songs to grab you and draw you into their mighty ebb and flow. Ultimately ‘Trails out of Gloom’ is a ride through the many different moods of a band possessed of great talent. While many reference points abound, they are so many and so varied as to only offer brief glimpses of the wonders contained within the album and any fan of progressive music will be utterly captivated by Fen. Give it a try, you undoubtedly will not regret it " - Sonic Abuse

"Never the Same Listen Twice"

"Fen will pull you in and leave you wanting more! Trails Out of Gloom creates textured melodies that always offer something different each time around. Reminds me of what I like about progressive rock, it's ability to create songs that tell stories with their instruments as well as their words. Doug Harrison has a wonderful voice. Don't miss out on this release, it's one of the better examples of the style I've heard in quite some time." - Cosmos Gaming and Music

"Excellent All the Way Through"

"Trails Out of Gloom is an excellent CD for those into the darker heavier side of Prog. Bands like Anathema, Opeth (without the growls) and Soundgarden are all references Doug Harrison. He has a powerfull and distinctive voice. All the tracks on this CD are excellent so Trails Out of Gloom is a good listen from start to finish.Recommended." - ProGGnosis Magazine- Progressive Rock & Fusion

"Beautiful and Tasteful"

"Doug Harrison is one of the new remarkable talent in the prog scene. Beautifully structured songs that almost drown in the right emotions and are decorated with tasteful arrangements. Fen resembles Anathema meets Threshold , but with an original, unique angle. Besides the Bucley reference, Harrison sounds sometimes like Damian Wilson as well, while the more peaceful, semi-acoustic passages has an Anathema vibe. Of course I can name the obvious comparisons like Porcupine Tree, Rush and a more airy Tool, but Fen has a style of its own.A more than warm and promising acquaintance!" - Lords of Metal

"An Addictive Listen"

"It’s one of the better if not the best release in 2010! Trails Out Of Gloom has a quality about it that resonates long after it’s all done. I tend to want to hear the whole album again and again and again. It never gets old, always new sounds present themselves and I get a better understanding of the music each time. Trails Out Of Gloom deserves to be spoken about among the more well known acts of the progressive rock genre. So without any doubt on my mind, this gets a very high recommendation!" - Prognaut

"A Hidden Gem of Progressive Music"

"Trails Out of Gloom is a hidden gem amongst the sometimes nonsensical world of progressive music. Fen are clearly masters at the complementary meshing of instruments. Trails Out of Gloom is a brilliantly composed album that sounds half way between the cleaner moments of Opeth and Anathema, whilst also retaining its own unique identity. Fen provide a delightful presentation of mellow and erudite prog." - Power Play Magazine issue #121

"A Journey Worth Taking"

“Dark and Aggressive. If your tastes veer from Porcupine Tree to Tool, these could be trails worth exploring.” - Geoff Barton, Classic Rock Magazine #146

"A Perfect Prog Album"

"Consistently enchanting from start to finish, Trails Out of Gloom is one of the more rapturous releases you're likely to encounter in quite some time. It is fantastic in every way. Highest possible rating, 16/16." - Progressions Magazine


Surgical Transfusion of Molting Sensory Reflections (2000)
Heron Leg (2003)
Congenital Fixation (2006)
Trails Out of Gloom (2010)
Of Losing Interest (2012)



Nestled in the mountain shadows of Nelson, British Columbia, Fen was born out of necessity as much as for creative expression. In 1998, the two reclusive personalities of guitarist/vocalist Doug Harrison and guitarist Sam Levin stumbled into each other’s presence, and rather than speak, they cycled riffs from opposite corners of the room. Between them they discovered a musical vision that greatly differed from that of the dread-locked locals. What they heard was dark and brooding, at times ominous and creepy, a rock derivative plagued by complexity and a desire to evolve.

Fen displaced to Vancouver and found a rhythm section, and over the next decade they released four albums: Surgical Transfusion of Molting Sensory Reflections (2000), Heron Leg (2003), Congenital Fixation (2006). In 2009, the band was holed up in Creativ Studios, laying down tracks for their fourth album, a haunting collection of lullabies, epic tales, and emotive ballads, called Trails out of Gloom.

During the creation of this long-awaited recording, indie label Ripple Music approached Fen to form a partnership. Signing a deal in 2010, both parties worked hand in hand to release Trails Out of Gloom on July 13th to rave reviews from the press and fans alike.

Going into 2011, Fen were specially invited to open for UK prog band, Blackfield, at Vancouver's Rickshaw Theatre (1000-capacity), they saw the album Trails Out Of Gloom make several Top Albums of 2010 lists, including The Ripple Effect, Imagine Echoes, Prognaut.com, Heavy Planet, Infernal Masquerade Webzine and others, began receiving AAA radio play in US for single "Miracle", as well as completing their first official video release for "Miracle" featuring marionettes by Mind of a Snail Puppet Co.

Joined by bassist Jeff Caron and drummer Nando Polesel, Fen completed their fifth album, Of Losing Interest, and it was released in August 2012.