War is Peace: An Interview with Hostile Array

Weaving politics into art is not a new concept. Albums used to convey messages of protest and propaganda goes way back, but its voice is heard now more than ever. For example, take Maryland post-hardcore band Hostile Array.

“We wanted to make a statement regarding topics that we feel are more important than ever,” lead vocalist Brendan Frey said. “We wanted to create something that would inspire a dialog with our listeners. Things like criminal justice reform, foreign policy, domestic surveillance and immigration are just a few issues that we are passionate about.”

Frey and the rest of the band - Garrison Frey, Hector Fernandez, Fredy Menjivar and Andrew Markle – grew up on the sounds of Underoath and Norma Jean and wanted to pay homage to the artists that brought them into this genre while adding their own modern take on the foundations set by their influences.

Their recently dropped self-titled EP is just over 30 minutes of maturity, both in the lyrics and with the instruments. They spent six months writing and recording pre-production with a good friend of theirs, Caleb Rodriguez. Once they were in the studio, Chris Galvez of Good Fortune Audio worked with them to solidify their sound.

“We spent a lot of nights just writing and rewriting material,” Frey said. “I think at least one of our songs was rewritten 4 times before we even entered the studio.”

Although they bounced the idea back and forth of giving the album a name, nothing stood out. After the idea of keeping it self-titled was suggested, it felt like a no-brainer.

Since the album, as well as the band in general, touches on diverse topics, they want their audience to be as equally informed as they are with issues surround the current state of the world. They’re hoping their audience takes away the need to understand and speak up when it comes to making the world a better place.

“Just… start a conversation. Sure we are projecting our own opinions and thoughts on some pretty sensitive subjects, but in the end, we want our listeners to think for themselves, question our current culture and maybe actually try to make a difference at the very least in their own communities,” Frey said.

Hostile Array and their outspoken nature really stand out with their self-titled EP. Questioning the status quo while producing a unique blend of sounds is a difficult task, but the post-hardcore five-piece makes it look easy.