Doom Metal

Darkest Era – Wither on the Vine Review

Darkest Era – Wither on the Vine Review

“Talk about making fans wait for a new album. Way, way back in 2014 I was gobsmacked by Severance, the sophomore release by Irish epic doom act Darkest Era. It had a near-perfect blend of doom, black, goth and Viking genres and felt like a heavy-duty emotional journey through dark, trying times. It stitched together the best parts of Primordial, Atlantean Kodex, Ereb Altor, and Iron Maiden to create an album grander than the sum of its parts. There was a brooding, melancholic beauty and power to it that few albums could equal. I was very anxious to get a followup, and nearly 8 long years later, it finally shows up.” Dark days.

Spectrum Mortis – Bit Meseri – The Incantation Review

Spectrum Mortis – Bit Meseri – The Incantation Review

“Through a medium of heavily atmospheric blackened doom, Bit Meseri mainly succeeds in communicating its occult inspiration. There is something of the ancient near east in the lilt of the guitars, reverberating against dusty darkness in quieter passages. The music also holds a distinctively ceremonial air that recalls Praise the Plague in its cavernous grandiosity and Behemoth in a near-warlike march, and guitars that parody church organs.” Necrofancy.

Strigoi – Viscera Review

Strigoi – Viscera Review

“As much of a doom metal cat as I am, I’ll woefully admit when I miss the boat on a band.Vallenfyre, the death/doom side-project that Paradise Lost axeman Gregor Mackintosh created to process the loss of his father, released three albums of 90s throwback Asphyxiation before Mackintosh put the band to rest in 2018, stating that he felt the band had run its course thematically. However, he still wanted to continue in that murky, grotesque vein, so with the help of live ‘Fyre bassist Chris Casket, Mackintosh unearthed Strigoi, a grindier, filthier proposition.” Death as paradise.

Holy Fawn – Dimensional Bleed Review

Holy Fawn – Dimensional Bleed Review

Death Spells was something special. Introducing us to the beautiful and devastating world of Holy Fawn, it showcased stunning restraint for an act with everything to prove. While undeniably built upon the foundation of My Bloody Valentine or Slowdive with saturated shoegaze drenching every movement, don’t be surprised if you’re surprised with swaths of electronica, climactic metal crunch, and a knack for heart-wrenching melody. Holy Fawn is undeniably metal, and like good metal, labyrinthine.” What is metal?

Spiritus Mortis – The Great Seal Review

Spiritus Mortis – The Great Seal Review

“In the darkness I lurk, watching from a distance for that first glimpse of what I know must eventually arrive. But how long must I languish in this grim limbo? My hunger grows exponentially as weeks stretch into months without succor. In anguish, I raise my fists to the Heavens and cry out. Where oh where are the great doom albums of 2022? Where are the classic doom-inspired platters designed to crush me ‘neath oceans of despair and mammoth riffs? Aside from the winning debut by Early Moods (God, I hate that name), there’s been little to slake my unhealthy doom desires. Thus I pinned a great deal of miserable hope on the return of Finland’s Spiritus Mortis.” High spirits.

Dead Void – Volatile Forms

Dead Void – Volatile Forms

“I became acquainted with Dead Void through their quiet yet mammoth 2018 demo The Looming Spectre. I was neck deep in the melodic style of death/doom, my only experience with more ominous mutterings consisting of Thergothon or Swallowing, so these Danes’ breed of absolutely devastating death/doom hit me like a ton of slimy bricks. As dead and dripping as the walls of R’lyeh, with a megaton weight that more closely recalled funeral doom, it cranked my excitement meter to a solid 11. When Volatile Forms appeared in the promo dump, I hungrily gobbled it up.” Void if forms removed.

Taxi Caveman – Galactic Slope Review

Taxi Caveman – Galactic Slope Review

“I’ll not proclaim any prior knowledge of this band, nor even a particular affinity for their advertised genre of stoner metal. These Polish gents were selected on the bases of an excellent name and central conceit of an album featuring just 2 tracks over 30 minutes. Over that length of time, I was at least assured that it would not be too taxing to review Taxi Caveman. Interestingly, Galactic Slope is described on its one sheet as a sophomore bridge between their debut and third album, the expression of which suggests to me that it’s not a substantial release in its own right. Given there are but 2 tracks, and at great risk of editorial wrath, I’ll take each in turn.” Crazy taxi.

In Grief – An Eternity of Misery Review

In Grief – An Eternity of Misery Review

“I have a complicated history with doom metal. While there are groups like Electric Wizard or High on Fire that I tend to turn to for my fuzzy, morose fix, I have more trouble with the deathened doom variety. Sure, you can’t shake a stick at the likes of Asphyx (and why would you? They’re old men and so very brittle), but executed poorly, you mix doom’s plodding passages with DMs unrelenting barrage, resulting in a bloated, brickwalled concoction that leaves your eardrums ringing and your watch over-checked. Be that as it may, I’ve been proven wrong before (except for our split review of Temple of Void’s latest) and there’s always something new to discover.” Good grief?

Hierophant – Death Siege Review

Hierophant – Death Siege Review

“I was first introduced to Italian noisemongers Hierophant with their 2013 sophomore effort, the provocatively titled Holy Mother: Holy Monster. An absolutely punishing release, it included all the hallmarks of acts like Oathbreaker, Celeste, and Hexis in its blackened hardcore/sludge combo. However, with a cutthroat crusty edge, it forsook all subtlety for punishing vitriol, excruciatingly dense and brutal.” Death sieges us all. Hold fast!

Lacrimas Profundere – How to Shroud Yourself With Night Review

Lacrimas Profundere – How to Shroud Yourself With Night Review

“Germany’s Lacrimas Profundere have been stoking the flames of gothic doom since the mid-nineties, exploring a range of related styles over the years.  Their early works were heavily based in the My Dying Bride framework of morose doom, but they evolved into a more rock-oriented sound mixing To Die For and Type O Negative tropes willy-nilly. They found their best moments exploring that style on albums like Ave End and Filthy Notes from Frozen Hearts and could usually be counted on for rocking, super-angsty fun. Lineup shuffles and personnel drama threatened to end the good/sad times, but 2019s Bleeding the Stars saw them reborn with a new, very talented vocalist and edgier approach. Roughly three years later we’re graced with the followup, How to Shroud Yourself With Night.” Hiding in the gloom.