Doom

Unruly – Unruly Review

Unruly – Unruly Review

“Look, I’m not saying I judge books records by their covers but, come on, everyone likes nice artwork, right? When I’m plumbing the murkier depths of Bandcamp, a cool cover can lure me into that one extra purchase that I swore I wasn’t going to make. It’s just as well for Te Whanganui a Tara, Aotearoa (or Wellington, New Zealand) trio Unruly then, that I didn’t see the cover of their self-titled debut before I hauled it out of the promo pit.” Ugly is as Unruly does.

The Funeral Orchestra – Negative Evocation Rights Review

The Funeral Orchestra – Negative Evocation Rights Review

“As just the second full-length from The Funeral Orchestra in 18 years of existence, to say that Negative Evocation Rights has been long in the making feels like a massive understatement. The follow up to 2003’s Feeding the Abyss, and given the band’s nom de plume and the fact that this Swedish trio do actually specialize in an ultra-slow, stripped back form of doom – it should be my opportunity to hold forth, at length, on the funeral doom genre.” Charnel knowledge.

Wailin Storms – Rattle Review

Wailin Storms – Rattle Review

“Five years ago, Madam X found Wailin Storms‘ debut full-length One Foot in the Flesh Grave to be a tasty treat, accurately calling it a mix between Danzig and 16 Horsepower. Their sound, which has changed little in the interim, is what you’d get if you conducted an experiment on band composition. Tell the bassist he’s playing in a doom outfit, tell the guitarist it’s psychobilly, tell the drummer to play post-hardcore, and let vocalist Justin Storms do exactly what it says on the tin. For an album that falls somewhere outside the usual bounds of metal, Rattle is all hot-blooded heaviness.” Weather the Storm.

Head of the Demon – Deadly Black Doom Review

Head of the Demon – Deadly Black Doom Review

Head of the Demon, were unknown to me when I picked up what is their third full-length outing. Thus far in their career, the occult-themed doomsters have kept a healthy four years between releases, dropping their self-titled debut in 2012 and its follow up, Sathanas Trismegistos, in 2016. Can 2020’s Deadly Black Doom deliver on its oh so tantalizing title?” Demon doom.

Wake – Devouring Ruin Review

Wake – Devouring Ruin Review

“Finding catharsis in the midst of chaos is the name of the game these days. It’s why every tenth article in your COVID co-opted news avalanche feed is about a bunny who adopted stray kittens. It’s why last Saturday I watched a live stream of a drag queen disinfecting every surface in her kitchen while performing Queen‘s “I Want to Break Free.” As the world around us is brought to its knees by the weight of uncertainty, we instinctively seek out and appreciate these small pressure release valves. Bands who ply their trade in chaotic styles should pay attention. Chaos plus time equals background noise, but there are two options to keep an audience engaged. The first is brevity. This is why hardcore punk albums are traditionally 25-30 mins long. The second is the thoughtful placement of sonic perches to rest upon.” Choose wisely.

Caskets Open – Concrete Realms of Pain Review

Caskets Open – Concrete Realms of Pain Review

“Alright, stop me if you’ve heard this one. Strife, Saint Vitus and Glenn Danzig walk into a bar. Danzig orders an absinthe, Saint Vitus order beers and Strife order Shirley Temples. Bartender says, “You boys can stay, but the penguin has got to go.” Ahhh? Wait, did I mention the penguin in the setup? Let me start over. Strife, Saint V…or maybe it was Earth Crisis. Is it funnier if Earth Crisis, has a penguin?” These are the jokes, kids.