Archive for Doom Metal

Review: Candlemass – Death Magic Doom [2009]

Posted in Candlemass, SOS Metal Update with tags on July 10, 2009 by gearsofrock

Amazon CandlemassSwedish doom metal pioneers Candlemass return with a refined sense of confidence with their latest offering, the eight-track DEATH MAGIC DOOM. Comfortably settling into yet another round of changes (most notably on the vocals), Leif Edling and company showcase that they are still able to conjure feelings of dread and despair straight from the Black Sabbath playbook (“Hammer of Doom”) with grace and respect but not without interspersing their own bells and whistles (as well as some kick ass solos) into the mix. This veteran unit maintains mid-paced mauling tempos for the most part, yet at times opt for the upbeat with success (“Dead Angel”) while the powerful tandem of killer vocals and memorable riffs propel tracks like “House of 1000 Voices” into the upper echelon of the slow, deep, and hard. Candlemass snaps back into fine form on their latest affair, exhibiting an unforeseen energy that boldly pushes their brand of doom metal into exhilarating new worlds. www.nuclearblastusa.com -Mike SOS

4 StarsCandlemass is Robert Lowe (Vocals), Mats “Mappe” Björkman (Rhythm Guitar), Lars Johansson (Lead Guitars), Leif Edling (Bass), & Jan Lindh (Drums).

Track Listing:

  1. “If I Ever Die”
  2. “Hammer of Doom”
  3. “Bleeding Baroness”
  4. “Demon of the Deep”
  5. “House of 1000 Voices”
  6. “Dead Angel”
  7. “Clouds of Dementia”
  8. “My Funeral Dreams”

GOR Recommendation: Heaven & Hell – The Devil You Know

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Review: Blood of the Black Owl – A Feral Spirit [2009]

Posted in Blood Of The Black Owl, SOS Metal Update with tags on June 28, 2009 by gearsofrock

Amazon Blood Of The Black OwlBlood of the Black Owl is a one-man metal band whose latest disc A FERAL SPIRIT embraces the worship of nature and its aesthetic beauty but not before it takes you by the throat to drag you down into the depths of the abyss. This sprawling nine-track excursion enlists unorthodox Native American instrumentation, animal and nature soundclips, enlightening use of organ, and crushingly slow funeral doom tempos to comprise a haunting aura (“Void”) while the troll under the bridge spoken-word into hysterical-crying vocals chronicle the painful journey from the throes of addiction (“Forest of Decrepitude”). Setting a deliberately straggling pace dripping with fuzzed-out black metal despair interspersed with left of center interludes, Blood of the Black Owl’s malice-filled ambiance and steady streams of atmosphere illuminate a mystic journey from damnation to salvation. www.bindrunerecordings.comMike SOS

3.5 Stars

Review: Esoteric – The Maniacal Vale [2008]

Posted in Esoteric, SOS Metal Update with tags on June 8, 2009 by gearsofrock

Amazon EsotericSinewy streams of unrelenting funeral doom come courtesy of veteran UK unit Esoteric via their latest offering, a two-disc, over 100 minute affair entitled THE MANIACAL VALE. Adorned with a twisted sense of ambience and an eerie aura that creeps into your head and takes control, this ambitious endeavor’s hypnotic waves of dissonance resonate with schizophrenic aggression played up by a vocal performance laden with ferocious growls and blood-curdling shrills while the music’s gradual slow crush, armed with a vitriolic array of swirling keyboards, dirge-like rhythmic poundings, and majestically ornate riffs overtake hapless souls in its path. Ripe with raw emotion and dripping with despair, this release oozes an ominous strain of doom and dread that fans of the slow, deep, and hard will easily tune into. www.season-of-mist.comMike SOS

4 StarsEsoteric is Greg Chandler (Vocals/Guitar), Gordon Bicknell (Guitar), Mark Bodossian (Bass), Olivier Goyet (Keyboards), & Joe Fletcher (Drums).

Track Listing:

  1. “Circle” (Disc 1)
  2. “Beneath This Face” (Disc 1)
  3. “Quickening” (Disc 1)
  4. “Caucus of Mind” (Disc 1)
  5. “Silence” (Disc 2)
  6. “Order Of Destiny” (Disc 2)
  7. “Ignotum Per Ignotius” (Disc 2)

Review: Maegashira – The Stark Attic [2009]

Posted in Maegashira, SOS Metal Update with tags on May 5, 2009 by gearsofrock

amazon-maegashiraNew Jersey doom merchants Maegashira clobber your cranium with a sludgy six-track sixty minute deluge into the depths of this quartet’s off-centered musical soul, drudging up shards of boogie-laden stoner metal and heinous hardcore metal heft from their collective musical wreckage along the way to comprise THE STARK ARCTIC. Not afraid to allow their inner Eyehategod to usurp the moment nor dive headlong into an icicle-inducing crushing metal jam, this fearless foursome’s boisterous proclamation of pure power renders an unorthodox yet punishing listening experience whose few and far between bellicose vocals keep the menacing tones creeping inside your head (“Back to Muro”) long after the song is over. If you’ve got the patience to let the psychedelic elements soak through these diabolical jams layered in lava, Maegashira’s new album projects a convincing slab of slow-churned vitriol embracing the darker side of the spectrum. www.sparechangerecords.com -Mike SOS

3-stars2Maegashira is JJ Koczan (Vocals), Geirge Pierro (Guitars), John Eager (Bass), & Steve Moraghan.

Review: Samothrace – Life’s Trade [2008]

Posted in Samothrace, SOS Metal Update with tags on March 20, 2009 by gearsofrock

amazon-samothraceUnbridled doom metal with a slew of icy blues tendencies is what Lawrence, KS quartet Samothrace serves up on their four-track, 48-minute offering LIFE’S TRADE. Echoing their Western states sentiments by adding American Indian tribal rhythms into the intricate musical maze to create a swirling effect that morphs Pink Floyd and Isis (“Awkward Hearts”), this band uses everything at their dispose to create sonic walls of slow-churned savagery. Showcasing a tremendous twin guitar tandem whose sludgy call and response shines throughout the disc, this crushing release embodies the spirit of desolation at its most absolute. www.20buckspin.com -Mike SOS

Review: Birushanah – Akai Yami [2008]

Posted in Birushanah, SOS Metal Update with tags , on March 5, 2009 by gearsofrock

amazon-birushanahPushing doom metal’s expansive boundaries to the outer limits, Birushanah present a three-track, forty-minute excursion of crushing sonic excess. This Japanese unit embraces its roots wholeheartedly, intertwining native instrumentation (fretless bass and crashing cymbals) with drone metal rhythms, a frenetic multi-percussive assault (whose output includes everything from pounding drums to what sounds like sheets of metal), and a maniacally warped vocal delivery leading the off-kilter charge.  AKAI YAMI is a release that is not easy to digest thanks to its song lengths and abundance of tempo and dynamic shifts (not to mention that all of the lyrics are all in Japanese), but it intriguingly contorts the genre’s paradigm to create a challenging listening experience for those up for a good brain drain. www.level-plane.com -Mike SOS

Review: Asva – What You Don’t Know Is Frontier [2008]

Posted in Asva, SOS Metal Update with tags on February 27, 2009 by gearsofrock

amazon-asvaSupplying seventy minutes of severe doom and drone, the latest effort by Asva is a sparse slow-churning affair that tries your patience more times than you can count before making good on resonating thick empiric riffs from the bowels of despair (“Christopher Columbus”). Interjecting odd nuances such as female choral vocals into its pitch black shapeshift (“A Game in Hell, Hard Work in Heaven”), Asva maintains an unorthodox atmosphere while retaining its vast soundscapes, yielding a listening experience whose waiting time warrants the big payoffs brought via cavernous riffs and thunderous cymbal crashes. www.southern.net -Mike SOS

Here is the amazon.com link for this album