Setting The Woods On Fire – Ruins

Album cover


  • STWOF tour all across Europe summer 2011.
  • Mastered by Michael Fossenkemper at Turtle Tone Studios, New York. (The Get Up Kids, The Casket Lottery, Coalesce and Brandtson).

Track Listing

  1. Quickstop
  2. December Decay
  3. 3,2,1 Gone
  4. We’re Falling

About this Release

RUINS is the latest release by the Polish post-hardcore sensation, Setting the Woods on Fire. Their 2009 debut saw this power trio from Warsaw hailed as one of the best bands in europe and this new EP is a step up again.

RUINS is the latest release by the Polish post-hardcore sensation, Setting the Woods on Fire. Their 2009 debut saw this power trio from Warsaw hailed as one of the best bands in europe and this new EP is a step up again, maybe one of the best independent releases of the year. The material for the Ruins EP was recorded on analog tape at the Prusiewicz Sound Studio near Krakow. Having entrusted the mastering of their debut LP to the Appleseed Cast’s Chris Crisci, the musicians have once again chosen to work with the best in the field — New York’s Turtle Tone Studios. Michael Fossenkemper, who has worked with such artists as The Get Up Kids, The Casket Lottery, Coalesce, The Umbrellas, Brandtson and Dizzee Rascal, is the man behind the final sound of Ruins.


Comin’ straight from Poland, this powerful post-hardcore trio deliver us a new 20 minutes EP after a sensational album published in 2009. Recorded on analog tape at the Prusiewicz Sound Studio near Krakow, Ruins has been mastered and mixed at the Turtle Tone Studios in New York by Michael Fossenkemper (The Get Up Kids, The Casket Lottery, Coalesce, The Umbrellas, Brandtson, Dizzee Rascal). Inside you’ll find four tracks that brings more energy in lyrics and new directions in music. Compared to the old material, it’s a good progression. Just do me a favour: don’t call ’em post-hardcore or post-rock. That sounds bad!

8 out of 10!



It’s been barely over two years since I last wrote about Polish trio Setting the Woods on Fire, and “Ruins” is their latest EP (this time coming from the perhaps more known Engineer Records roster), which sees the band taking their stripped down, classic emo aesthetic in a few new directions throughout four tracks/20 minutes. There’s still a good amount of restrained, fuzzy distortion and a combination of relaxed singing and shouting/screaming vocals, but they’re now flirting with some subtle textural effects and melodies that could probably be tagged with the whole “post-rock” thing (not in a bad way, though). This time around the recording also gives the basslines more oomph, and is a bit heavier in general, so you can start to discern more of a noise rock influence happening. I think the biggest difference, though, is that they’re putting more energy into the songwriting, which covers a wider range of emotions – from the somber and chilled out angle that was most prominent on their debut to both catchier and more aggressive moments herein. It’s great to see the band showing signs of progression and starting to garner more attention, and I’m once again looking forward to hearing more…


Dead Earnest

RUINS – Setting The Woods On Fire CD-EP

I have no reason for being surprised when I find that this is the work of a trio from Poland other than the fact that in a blindfold test, you’d have sworn they were an English hi-octane punk band with a shedload of guitar players passing through for good measure and a bassist playing a bass about ten feet tall and very loud. The first three tracks revolve around this huge whirlwind of guitars but it’s not just any old punk band, they play guitars that swirl, dive, drive, hammer out, power up, lift off like rockets, fuzz to the max and have a positively blistering hi-intensity heat to them throughout.

The bass is right upfront and equally powerful, in fact a lot of it sounds like a more varied, cohesive and more dramatic backing to Blur’s legendary “Song 2” as that bass decidedly hits you right in the gut. Propelled by drumming that crunches, pounds and goes nuclear, topped by vocals that are almost shouted, full of anguish, roaring out like the guy’s life depended on it, the songs are not anything like standard punk – it’s more the rage of thrash allied to the power of punk and played like a massively metallic, raging version of Joy Division – although the nearest band I’ve heard to this to date is fast-rising Dundee band Vladimir, only they’re more Joy Division-meets-Can and less metal. Anyway, the songs twist and turn, dive and soar, ebb and flow, largely intense affairs, quite long, dramatic, full of passion and really hold your attention.

The last song features a greater sense of dynamics than the others, as it actually possesses quiet bits, but by and large, it’s a band and an EP into which to sink your vampire teeth and be soundly thrashed.

Andy Garibaldi



One, two, three, four, five.

“Quick stop” is a real firecracker, but begins inconspicuously. Best, overlapping vocals and Dominic Martin. Great riff. And the energy that blows up the speakers. This is the modern hardcore. But guys do not forget about the 90s, the vibrating riff floats spirit of At The Drive-In.

“December Decay” with “Quick stop” is known since November and although I listen to it since then, almost without interruption from the very beginning to the end. Post-rock landscapes are interspersed with brutal screamo, hit tunes are covered under layers of humming guitars. Then there’s the drums from the first strike promises something epic. For a long time I thought it was best track STWOF, but it’s not entirely true, as in a moment.

“3,2,1 Gone” can serve as a primer in 2in1 shampoo commercials, because I like them serves two purposes. We start with a simple but not banal punk, again vocals. Such a point of perfect for skateboarding. The second part is more challenging. More in the combine and the apocalypse.

“We’re Falling”. It begins with the somber keys, and then it gets even metal. Guitar outbursts of aggression are tinted by the almost ballad moments. Mood swing guaranteed. There are also moments of noise, full of beautiful cacophony. My thoughts go straight to Circle Takes The Square. “We’re Falling” is definitely the best composition of Warsaw. Showing their full potential.


They could not have chosen a better title. “Ruins” its like a musical apocalypse, nothing will be left after its passage, even the foundations. We had to wait for these songs for over two years, but they compensate with a vengeance this time.

8.6 out of 10

Michael Wieczorek


Fuck You Hipsters

Vigorously, with the life and hard. Ruins is a classic item for any fan of post-hardcore.

Right from the start opening EP “Quick stop” the band introduces listeners into a real, cumulative clamor of sounds. Powerful drums, dynamic riffs and screaming vocals preliminary, Martin Buźniaka make us expect something massive. Of course, as befits a respectable emocore / screamo in such productions can not be missed – apart from a vigorous declamation – melodic singing, something like a liquid, a Californian punk (yes, yes – emo is nothing but a frequent transition from the packed guitar screaming brewing in a very pleasant and gentle vocals), however, does not recognize it under any circumstances open track.

Noise increases in the single “December Decay” (thanks to the frantic drums), in the end an insert psychodelic-soothing approaching the post-rock influences. After that, undoubtedly the weakest element of the situation once again saves the murderous pace of the guitar in “3,2,1, Gone” and the two voices singing / chanting in the first part of the work. Development leaves a lot to be desired, because the guys slow significantly, and only at the very end will recall that they had played in a hardcore version of the “post”. The drums are very hard and feel the pain until the drums, when Charles Koszniec gives vent to power on the instrument.
“We’re Falling”. Hardcore melodies combined with the approaching of the weight of heavy metal tunes are interspersed with quiet to again cross the thin boundary noise and cacophony. The final bars of the sound quite as “sunny-Californian.”
Ruins show how they made a big step between the citizens of Warsaw and the debut EP,. Improved primarily vocals. Martin is doing much better with skipping between screaming and singing. Also, his voice took on a more melodic colour, which means a huge plus for the team.

EP is, generally speaking, pretty cool thing. It’s a nice preview for the upcoming full-length album. It is also a kind of yardstick further down the road. With Setting The Woods On Fire, you can expect a really strong positionally material.

8 / 10 (tempted to jump to nine, but the EP is an EP)


We Are From Poland

The sensational trio makes its debut in Warsaw with an extremely smooth and mature EP. Announces that the next – hopefully longer – album.

STWOF managed to breathe new life into stale crust of hard core, to reconcile the Orthodox with the fans of melody and mixing styles. Ruins is a skillfully cooked cocktail with the best ingredients – its consumption results in an immediate increase in adrenaline. They start with a catchy tune in the Quick stop – somehow combine here core’owy soaked grunge and new wave (at the end). Pulled guitar with boxing brutal bass in the finale evokes admiration for the control and precision of the musicians. Singles December Decay strikes since the beginning of an apocalyptic sound of drums and guitar clamor devastating hearing. Desperate atmosphere is rising with each new climax and screams Buźniaka Martin, who does not spare the throat as befits a true hardcore. We’re Falling offers an incredible mood swings. Ambient intro riff , mute and extreme cacophony of sounds. In the end, battered ears, have a longer respite thanks to a mild Outro. And that’s really the end?

STWOF erect the cathedral of sound, and then deliberately turn it into ruins. Then take the ashes and looks defiantly, as if to say “we know what we are doing, even if you think that we are only three frisky kids at supermarket at night…


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