The songs here are deceptively charming, with lush, airy arrangements that belie their dark, weighty lyrics. The production is rich and multifaceted to match, blending retro and futuristic palettes into a spellbinding swirl of high-def indie rock and lo-fi bedroom pop. As its title suggests, Host is an exploration of the sinister dynamics at play in a parasitic relationship, but rather than dwell in the discomfort, the record charts a cathartic journey towards freedom and self-reliance, reveling in the power that comes from standing your ground and declaring independence in the face of exploitation and manipulation.
Formed while Follin and Oblivion were still just students in college, Cults first emerged in 2010 with their breakout single, “Go Outside,” which the New York Times hailed as “one of the indie rock highlights” of the year. Both a commercial and critical smash, the track would go on to rack up more than 40 million streams on Spotify, land in soundtracks everywhere from Broad City to Gossip Girl, and help the band score a major label deal for their self-titled debut, released the following year on Columbia Records.
The duo followed it up with the similarly celebrated Static in 2013, and they returned in peak form four years later with Offering, building up a devoted audience along the way through relentless headline touring and festival appearances at Bonnaroo, Lollapalooza, Coachella, Austin City Limits, and more.