Archive for Sludge Metal

Review: Kylesa – Static Tensions [2009]

Posted in Kylesa, SOS Metal Update with tags on July 1, 2009 by gearsofrock

Amazon KylesaAfter a tumultuous eight-year run, Savannah, GA quintet Kylesa have come into their own on the outfit’s latest 10-track disc STATIC TENSIONS. Fully realizing their unique spot in between Isis and Mastodon on the metal continuum, this act has struggled both through wallowing the underground as well as in the shadows of some bigger hometown bands, having endured the kind of major setbacks (such as deciding to forge on after original bassist Brian Duke’s sudden passing) that destroy bands with lesser perseverance and ultimately coming out musically richer in the process. With the aid of two drummers (whose stunning interplay adds a refreshing nuance as well as an added fury on cuts like “Said and Done”) and a slew of swirling psychedelics flying in an out of memorable guitar and bass lines freshly woven into the dank downtuned stoner metal meets sludge-ridden doom rock tapestry hanging on their wall (“Almost Lost”), Kylesa manages to supplement without losing any ground, maintaining its trademarked voluminous viscosity throughout (“Running Red”). Burying the alternating female/male vocal just deep enough in the mix to render a haunting yet intelligible presence that makes it easier to absorb the abrasive rhythms, burly riffs and thick percussion (“Insomnia for Months”) while executing exercises in songwriting self-editing to keep the entire entity on a disciplined track of discourse, for a less expansive yet more rewarding exploration into the realm of gutwrenching metallic melodies, Static Tensions is hard to beat. www.prosetheticrecords.comMike SOS

4.5 StarsKylesa is Phillip Cope (Guitar/Vocals), Laura Pleasants (Guitar/Vocals), Javier Villegas (Bass), Carl McGinely (Drums/Live Samples), & Eric Hernandez (Drums).

Track Listing:

  1. “Scapegoat”
  2. “Insomnia For Months”
  3. “Said And Done”
  4. “Unknown Awareness”
  5. “Running Red”
  6. “Nature’s Predators”
  7. “Almost Lost”
  8. “Only One”
  9. “Perception”
  10. “To Walk Alone”
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Review: 16 – Bridges To Burn [2009]

Posted in 16, SOS Metal Update with tags on April 8, 2009 by gearsofrock

amazon-16Subtle as a sledgehammer to the skull, Southern California sludge metal vets 16 return after a 12-year hiatus with BRIDGES TO BURN. This quartet’s vitriolic reintroduction to the world is a venomous 12-track affair laden with crushing yet hazy hardcore grooves that drum up comparisons to everything from Weedeater and Will Haven (“Missed the Boat”) to Unsane and Helmet (“You Let Me Down (Again)”). Abrasive vocals ragefully spitting out nuggets of nihilism and riffs bolstered with bone-shattering crush do battle with an unrelenting rhythm section’s voluminous batterings on seething selections such as “Monday Bloody Monday,” the bouncy bastardized bop of “Me and My Shadow,” and the self-loathing “Thorn In Your Side.” Dumping out their patented gloom and doom desperation mantra over waves of molten stoner rock (“What Went Wrong?”), 16 have thoroughly scraped from inner hell’s deepest recesses to make this disc a bleak blues-metal gem. www.relapse.comMike SOS

Review: Seeds of Chaos – Seeds of Chaos [2008]

Posted in Seeds of Chaos, SOS Metal Update with tags , , , on December 20, 2008 by gearsofrock

seeds-of-chaosNew Jersey metal mavens Seeds of Chaos attack with a sludgy slam on their five-track presentation. Taking the thick mid-paced mauling from bands like Goatwhore and Soilent Green and combining a slaughtering death metal crunch a la Obituary, this quintet unapologetically thrash their way through head stomping riff-tastic episodes of viscous metallic might. If you like it brutal and hit the bong, this act provides the perfect soundtrack to your unearthly escape. www.myspace.com/seedsofchaosMike SOS

Review: Deadbird – Twilight Ritual [2008]

Posted in Deadbird, SOS Metal Update with tags , , on October 29, 2008 by gearsofrock

Creepy and doomy, the sophomore six-track sojourn from Arkansas sludge metal quartet Deadbird is a viscous Southern-fried delight whose massive rhythmic rumblings give the band the sheer heft to properly obliterate all in their wake. From the menacing slow-churned intro on “Into the Clearing,” this oppressive unit takes you through a grueling 47:23 journey steeped in sonic excess and draped with eerie vocal harmonies and dazzling acoustic interludes (“The Riverbed”), descending down through the deepest recesses to unearth the sleeping Southern rock giant (“Feral Flame”) to unleash thick waves of metallic lava for tortured souls to bask in. If you dig Mastodon and love Crowbar, prepare to meet your new favorite band. www.atalossrecordings.comMike SOS

Buy Twilight Ritual