Maps And Foils
New Music

A descent into sonic despair and wrath with “Dies Irae” by MAPS AND FOILS

3 mins read

Three years after their second album, “Less Is Mort,” the Parisian post-hardcore band Maps And Foils returns with their new EP, “Dies Irae.” This release marks a significant point in the band’s evolution, both musically and personally, as they navigate the departure of founding member Thomas and the reconfiguration of their lineup. Now a trio, Tristan (vocals, guitars), Lucas (drums), and Ewen (bass) bring a raw, unfiltered intensity to their music, refusing to remain silent even in the midst of recording their new album.

The EP opens with “Infernal,” a track that was conceived immediately after the band’s last show in 2022. Tristan, deeply influenced by the aggressive and bleak sounds of REFUSED, BREACH, and the gothic undertones of THE CURE’s “Pornography,” channels these inspirations into a song built around intricate drum patterns. This spontaneous creation process reflects a sense of urgency and a need for a musical purge, setting a dark, melancholic tone that permeates the EP.

The title track, “Dies Irae,” was written just before the recording sessions for “Less Is Mort” in 2020 but did not make the final cut for the album.

This song embodies the band’s signature post-metallic sound, with heavy, meandering riffs reminiscent of CULT OF LUNA and NEUROSIS.

Thematically, “Dies Irae” delves into the turmoil of a violent dispute, contrasting with “Infernal,” which explores the sorrow of a breakup neither party desires. Both tracks, although not directly about Thomas’ departure, resonate with the band’s collective sense of loss and transformation, acting as a coping mechanism and a farewell to the past era.

The inclusion of a cover of SYSTEM OF A DOWN’s “Innervision” adds an unexpected twist to the EP.

This cover, born from playful studio sessions during the “Less Is Mort” recordings, injects a sense of fun and nostalgia into the otherwise somber narrative. It serves as a homage to the band’s roots and long-standing influences, highlighting the enduring bond between Tristan and Lucas, who have been playing music together since their teenage years. The rediscovery and completion of this cover after four years underscore the EP’s theme of returning to the mothership before embarking on the next journey.

“Dies Irae” is a cathartic exploration of destruction, rebirth, and the complexities of human relationships. For fans of CAVE IN, DEFTONES, and THE DILLINGER ESCAPE PLAN, this EP offers a raw, immersive experience we are examining today in a special track-by-track commentary provided by the band below.


‘Infernal’ was one of the first songs we started to work on right after our last show at the end of 2022. I was listening to Refused and Breach a lot and I thought it would be interesting to build the songwriting around drum patterns for our next release. I was also obsessed with The Cure’s Pornography and found a strange connection between the album and the gothic nu metal style that Korn was doing on Issues.

Maps And Foils

I guess I was in the mood for bleakness because I also rediscovered Mansfield TYA, an amazing french duo that blends cold wave and classical music and it had a massive influence on my songwriting during this time. For some reasons, I felt this song needed to be released as quickly as possible, almost like a musical purge so I could focus on the new album. It was a very spontaneous thing and I’m very happy we could pull it off.

Dies Irae

The title track was written right before we started to record our second album ‘Less Is Mort’ in 2020. It was a more meandering and heavy affair. I guess there is a bit of Cult Of Luna and Neurosis here and there. Back then, it was all about making explosive post-hardcore songs and keeping it short, so ‘Dies Irae’ didn’t make the cut but the song became a highlight in our live shows the following year. I didn’t realize right away but both songs on the EP are about separation. While ‘Infernal’ is a sad breakup that none of the persons involved want, ‘Dies Irae’ is about two people having their worst and most violent dispute ever.

One sounds like a melancholic downer and the other sounds like ancient gods are throwing mountains at each other. Although none of these songs are about Thomas’ departure, I guess this EP acts as a coping mechanism in some ways. When Thomas told us he was going to leave the band, we were already talking about releasing ‘Dies Irae’ as a single of some sort so I was super happy that he took the time to record his guitars and be apart of this EP before he left. I like the idea that we were able to keep it fresh with a brand new song opening a new chapter while the title track ‘Dies Irae’ kinda concludes the Less Is Mort cycle.


This one is an oddball. Lucas and I are big System Of A Down fans. We’ve been playing music together since we were teenagers and everytime we can, we like to butcher the Steal This Album front to back. When we were tracking drums for ‘Less Is Mort’ four years ago, we had some extra time to waste in the studio so we made a cover of ‘Innversion’ just for fun. Fast forward to 2024, while I’m mixing the new EP, I stumble upon the drums from Innervision and it was so good it had to be released with the two other songs. I also find it hilarious that it took us four years to ‘spontaneously’ complete something that felt like the missing piece of the puzzle.


Karol Kamiński

DIY rock music enthusiast and web-zine publisher from Warsaw, Poland. Supporting DIY ethics, local artists and promoting hardcore punk, rock, post rock and alternative music of all kinds via IDIOTEQ online channels.
Contact via [email protected]

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