Hiss Spun

Chelsea Wolfe - Hiss Spun
Critic Score
Based on 19 reviews
2017 Ratings: #155 / 831
User Score
Based on 245 ratings
2017 Ratings: #121
Liked by 1 person
September 22, 2017 / Release Date
LP / Format
Sargent House / Label
Gothic Rock / Genres
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chelseawolfe.net / Website
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While Wolfe’s incredible vocals are the main draw, her long term collaborator Ben Chisholm deserves significant recognition too. Not only does his fuzzed-to-fuck bass make these songs feel genuinely threatening, his manipulation of sound and creation of washes and collages provides unsettling backgrounds for Wolfe to weave her magic over.
The 405

After years of delivering on her promise, it comes as no surprise that Hiss Spun is as good as it is. The instrumental tracks dance around Wolfe’s soaring vocals and ultimately collide with them perfectly to create a collection of songs that are a joy to listen to.


With each release, Wolfe moved forward and built higher, climbing toward something deeper, darker and clearer than she’d done before. Only time will tell where her new album Hiss Spun fits in, but it’s not hard to hear it as the culmination of her efforts over the past seven years.

The Line of Best Fit

On Hiss Spun, Chelsea Wolfe creates a world for her listeners to occupy, a dense and florid landscape into which they can sink.

Slant Magazine

The expansive Hiss Spun marks the most cohesive iteration of Wolfe’s sound to date, as she weathers life’s uproars by overcoming the claustrophobia of simply being present within dark, interior spaces.

The Skinny

The enigmatic Chelsea Wolfe has been patiently mastering her craft for some time now. Hiss Spun, her sixth long player, is nothing but proof of that. There is no one really like Wolfe – True Widow are the only act to come close – crossing goth-inspired singer-songwriting folk with gloom metal.


Listening to Hiss Spun is a punishing affair, but it's a rewarding one too. It's the sound of an artist not afraid to dig deep emotionally, and that challenges the listener to do so as well.

Loud and Quiet
Fans may have been left wondering how Wolfe would follow up a record as powerful and bleak as 2015s ‘Abyss’, but her fifth studio album ‘Hiss Spun’ is likely to become regarded as her most experimental and epic outing to date.
Drowned in Sound

Though Hiss Spun probably won't end up as the best of her career, it may well be Wolfe's best so far.


Both fierce and fragile, Hiss Spun presents an artist in compelling control of the entire scope of her expression.


The shadows, as well as the sparse pinpricks of light that populate Hiss Spun suggest an uncanny landscape, one filled with strange nightmares regarding you from a distance. Which is to say the album has, incontrovertibly this time, real depth and mystery.

As much as Wolfe broods, the songs don’t illuminate her pain all that much. The people and travails she sings about dwell in the periphery of the music like flickering shadows.
The Needle Drop

Chelsea Wolfe's foray into the slow and heavy sounds of doom/atmospheric sludge metal is admirable and mostly successful, but does come with some growing pains.

No Ripcord

Hiss Spun is the first record from Chelsea Wolfe that commits entirely to the more catastrophic elements of her repertoire, and the results are equal parts stunning and terrifying.

A.V. Club
For all the genuinely moving moments—Wolfe is nothing if not inspiringly baroque in lyrics and delivery—the album as a whole coheres too much, one song blurring into the next without enough emotional or musical variance to distinguish the entirety. Even with the odd experiment or sonic transition, Chelsea Wolfe isn’t letting off the accelerator enough for listeners to appreciate the nuance.
Sheer, stellar and incredibly massive. She finally embraced her metal side.
This is definitely my favourite chelsea wolfe album yet, imo she's improving which each one. I like how this album didn't hit you over the head like Abyss did with Carrion Flowers, Hiss Spun trusts it's listener to be patient and let the atmosphere of the album sink in over time. The opening track here is much more lumbering, eerie & quiet, but when this album does decide to explode on songs like The Culling, Static Hum & especially on Twin Fawn, it's RIDICULOUSLY satisfying imo. To me, ... read more
The ideas behind this album we’re better than the album itself. It came out in a week where, it was either this, or more boring indie pop. I’ll gladly take this over another critic-paid jerk off fest.

That being said, songs like Twin Fawn still go soooo hard, and I love that this was such a lane change for Chealsea, that she came totally prepared for.
I'm not as convinced by this direction for Chelsea as I expected to be. I think the rest of her discography has wonderful dynamism, both in theme and production, but the gloomy atmosphere of this record makes everything feel a little claustrophobic in comparison. That said, it's refreshing having to adapt my expectations of a Chelsea Wolfe record, rather than not having to challenge them at all. I have no doubt in my mind that this record will grow on me further.

Despite my initial thoughts, ... read more
As gnarly as Chelsea has ever been, but also the least diverse.
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Track List

  1. Spun
  2. 16 Psyche
  3. Vex
  4. Strain
  5. The Culling
  6. Particle Flux
  7. Twin Fawn
  8. Offering
  9. Static Hum
  10. Welt
  11. Two Spirit
  12. Scrape
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Added on: June 14, 2017