Slugdge_Dim and Slimeridden KingdomsDevilishly creative UK duo Slugdge took the underground by storm last year when they dropped the wildly adventurous Gastronomicon on unsuspecting audiences, gaining something of a cult status in the process. The slug overlords impressed with their rough-edged DIY attitude, splendid genre-bending and potent, unpredictable delivery. Gastronomicon was an absolute blast of freshness full of explosive hooks and schizoid weirdness grounded by an overall cohesiveness. Well it didn’t take the combo of Matt Moss and Kev Pearson long to pump out another scattershot album of top notch extremity with their flavorsome third LP, Dim and Slimeridden Kingdoms. While common threads remain between Dim and Slimeridden Kingdoms and Gastronomicon, Slugdge aren’t in the business of repeating themselves or narrowing their artistic scope. As such Dim and Slimeridden Kingdoms stands on its own as another weird, tripped-out journey into the strange headspace that Slugdge occupy.

There’s a healthy old school influence interwoven into Slugdge’s muscular sound, recalling tidbits from the timeless ’90s Floridian death metal scene in particular. Slugdge’s innovative songwriting approach and mutating blend of extreme styles, fusing elements of death, doom, prog, black and thrash, squashes any hint of derivation and separates them from the hordes of metal bands flooding the underground market. Sick, slimy riffs ooze ominously from the album’s pores, amid a strong presence of eerie and sinister melodies and a progressive undercurrent pulsing within. Whereas Gastronomicon had a rapid pulse and manic intensity, Dim and Slimeridden Kingdoms has a more measured and refined tone, without losing grip of the eclectic nature and explosiveness of Slugdge’s brand of offbeat extreme metal. Matt Moss’ excellent vocals are on point again with another killer performance, showcasing his versatility and the all-round strength of his vocal talents. Deep guttural growls, mid-range screams and variations in-between collide with his wonderfully unsettling cleans, that are thoughtfully placed for maximum impact. His clean vocals on the highly melodic, anvil-heavy slog of the doom-laden “Pellet in the Head” are particularly memorable.

The lurching slab of polluted death and horror-movie atmosphere of the opening title track is violently punctuated with thrashy bursts of blackened intensity and soulful, grime-coated guitar work, reinforcing the structural oddities and endlessly interesting and progressive nature of Slugdge’s songwriting. Songs turn on a dime and zig when you expect them to zag, bending genres in clever and innovative ways and showcasing the duo’s impressive compositional skills and technical prowess. Repeat listens are not only essential but deeply rewarding, especially when the album’s hooks generally take longer to digest and appreciate when stacked up to the catchier immediacy of Gastronomicon. The creeping melodies, doom-death passages and spooky atmospherics dispersed throughout the album are particularly effective.

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“Suffering Quahog” features pretty much everything great about Slugdge over seven-minutes plus of action-packed metal. Thick doomy riffage and deathly grooves drive the song’s first movement, before the gateways open for a spacious, soaring clean vocal passage that leads into a sparkling guitar solo. The song’s incredible second movement expertly shifts gears multiple times and even veers into ultra complex tech-death territory with stunning results. Dim and Slimeridden Kingdoms lengthy duration occasionally bloats under its own weight and overall I don’t find the album quite as addictive as its predecessor, though of course that assessment could easily change in time. Otherwise these minor drawbacks are easy to overlook. Dim and Slimeridden Kingdoms also benefits from an improved production job, sounding  raw and unvarnished yet simultaneously clear and punchy. It’s also far less taxing on the ears with an improved dynamic range allowing the music and restless dynamic shifts more room to breathe.

Only time will tell if Slugdge decide to add another chapter to their visionary slug saga, but fingers crossed that one way or another this exciting duo continue making compelling extreme metal for many years to come. Support this excellent band and pick this sucker up as a Name-Your-Price option on Bandcamp and hail the twisted genius of Slugdge.

Tracks to check: “Dim and Slimeridden Kingdoms”, “Suffering Quahog”, “Flying Snails”


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  • mtlman1990

    I love this band. Gastronomicon was one of my favorite albums last year.

    • Aaron

      Totally agree. Gastronimicon blew me away. Can’t wait to check this out.

  • Alexandre Barata

    This… I’m in love with this!!

  • Dammit. I hadn’t heard this and it sounds really fucking good. And now I have to listen to it and my goddamned list is already done!!!!!!11!

    • Pimpolho

      The more metal Angry Metal Guy receives, the angrier He gets!

      • Thatguy

        I like it when he is angry.

        Thanks L for letting us know about this great sounding album and thanks for poking the beast.

    • Chigo

      ‘Ish that motherfucker!

    • Monsterth Goatom

      So there’s Slugdge, Misþyrming, and Wilderun: three great, unsigned bands. Ever tempted to restart the Unsigned Band Rodeo? : )

      • Looks like these days they’re just landing on my fucking lists.

    • Luke_22

      Don’t you hate that? I feel oddly guilty when I neglect to include a late discovery on my list, even though no-one but me would really give a shit.

    • Norfair Legend

      It’s definitely top ten material, took me by surprise last year too and have been praising Mollusca ever since.

  • brutal_sushi

    This band is so fucking good!!!

  • iagree84

    First of all I’d like to say thanks to everyone at amg. With the flood of new releases every month, (re)discovering old bands and listening to favourites, I really enjoy this site for hearing things that inevitably slip through the cracks. I’ll have enough material to listen to once I get t the retirement home. That is… if they let me keep it. The future looks bleak. Cheers!

    • Monsterth Goatom

      Just tell them the music helps keep you regular. ; )

  • 517H

    Awesome totally missed this. Thanks for the heads up, mate. Happy holidays, everyone!

    • Luke_22

      No problem, same to you buddy!

  • Baax Brewing

    Thank you AMG, I had no idea this awesomeness existed until I read this review.

    • Luke_22

      Glad to help out. Be sure to check out Gastronomicon as well.

  • Wilhelm

    a DR5 isn’t much of an improvement from a DR4, but still it doesn’t sound all that terrible. I can just imagine if this band had something like a DR10, they would blow people away.

    • Luke_22

      I measure a DR6 using Foobar and to me it sounds about two points less brickwalled than Gastronomicon. Of course if they hit double figures this shit would sound even more incredible, but at least they’re heading in the right direction.

  • madhare

    Thank you so much for bringing this to our attention! I think I prefer this one over Gastronomicon,

    For anyone skeptical about the band: Try them for the laughs, and you’ll never let go for the pure fucking awesomeness of the music.

  • Worldeater

    Someone in the forum brought up this album (i think it was Goatom!) and it has been one of my favorite records since!

  • CyberJesus

    This is an awesome album! Thanks for the heads up amg :D

  • Guillotine of Papal Crowns

    As a matter of principle, I cannot let pass unnoticed an album with a song called “Flying Snails” on it.
    A Snail. Flying. FUCK.

    • Kronos

      Also, it’s a Gojira pun.

      • 517H

        The puns are strong with this band. Slayer’s Spore Ensemble. RATM’s Pellet in the Head. Nile’s Chapter for Transforming into a Slug.

        • Kronos

          Gastronomicon had Scar Symmetry’s Slimewave zero, Pink Floyd’s Dark Side of the Shroom, Richard Rodgers’ The Sound of Mucus, and Morbid Angel’s Salters of Madness.

  • Dethjesta

    Love this album & Gastronomicon. Thanks for the review.

  • Grymm

    This reminds me a bit of Anaal Nathrakh meeting Hypocrisy. I dig.