Hour of 13

The Sabbathian – Latum Alterum Review

The Sabbathian – Latum Alterum Review

“Back in the olden days of… er, 2012, Hour of 13 mainman Chad Davis teamed up with former Nàttsòl vocalist Anette Uvaas Gulbrandsen to form The Sabbathian, dropping a convincing three-song EP in 2014’s Ritual Rites. While musically it was a logical continuation of the Hour of 13 sound but with the angelic vocals of Gulbrandsen, Ritual Rites turned enough heads to leave those salivating for their unique brand of occult doom metal wanting more. But in those five years, so much Scoobie Doobie Doom occult metal has saturated the market to the point that all that’s missing from the albums are hoods, masks, and drawn-out lawsuits. Davis and Gulbrandsen know this, and on the long-awaited follow-up, Latum Alterum, an about-face was performed to steer clear of their contemporaries.” Devil in the details.

Bloody Hammers – Under Satan’s Sun Review

Bloody Hammers – Under Satan’s Sun Review

“It seems Bloody Hammers has a new album in the pipeline every few months. In fact, this is the third of their platters I’ve reviewed since late 2012, which pretty much makes them the anti-Necrophagist. Under Satan’s Sun is their first album without a topless woman on the cover (which I take issue with, purely for marketing reasons, mind you), but their style continues to broaden and evolve, blending the occult rock shtick made so notable by Ghost with the throwback doom of Hour of 13 and Uncle Acid and the Deadbeats.”

Bloody Hammers – Spiritual Relics Review

Bloody Hammers – Spiritual Relics Review

Well, this is a bit of a surprise. I never heard of Bloody Hammers until I reviewed their self-titled debut in February, and now they’re back with a follow-up a mere seven months later! Talk about productivity! While I liked aspects of the debut and their Hour of 13 and Witchfinder General meets Danzig approach to retro “occult rock,” things felt a bit underwhelming as a whole and suffered from inconsistent songwriting.” With so little time between releases, is it realistic to expect big improvement on Spiritual Relics? Steel Druhm is here to prep your expectations accordingly.

Church of Void – Dead Rising Review

Church of Void – Dead Rising Review

Church of Void is a young upstart Finnish doom band, but they like to bill themselves as the spearhead of the “new wave of traditional heavy doom metal.” While that might be putting the cart before the dead horse quite a bit for an obscure band, I admire their hyperbole and moxie. Featuring former members of Battlelore and Horna, they play a slightly amorphous style of doom that skips between 70s Sabbath worshipping acts like Orchid and Hour of 13, modern doom like Katatonia and even stoner rock like Monster Magnet.” Can a young band lead the way in a style so old and gnarly? Steel Druhm is also old and gnarly so we asked him.

Bloody Hammers – Bloody Hammers Review

Bloody Hammers – Bloody Hammers Review

“Its clear the whole “occult retro doom/rock” thing is here to stay, like it or not. With entities like Hour of 13, Castle, Occultation, Devil’s Blood and Ghost already throwing on the vest, hailing the 70s and generally receiving good press, you can expect newcomers to keep popping up like hippies at a grow-op. Bloody Hammers is one of those filthy, dirty hippies (saddled with a name that implies a death metal barrage).” I know what you’re all thinking. Why won’t Steel Druhm stop shoving retro doomy vest metal at us? Well, I shove because I love and here’s more vest to add to the rest!

Things You May Have Missed 2010: Briton Rites – For Mircalla

Things You May Have Missed 2010: Briton Rites – For Mircalla

Briton Rites is a heavy doom metal act hailing from Atlanta Georgia and their debut album For Mircalla came out of nowhere and really blew me away. Released by Echoes of Crom Records and features Phil Swanson of Hour of 13 on vocals and one of the heaviest, most distorted guitar sounds out there courtesy of Howie Bentley of Cauldron Born. Together these gents serve up some truly ginormous Cathedral, Pentagram, Witchfinder General worship of the highest caliber but with a style all their own. With a thematic concept largely dealing with cult vampire movies like “Captain Cronos” or “Crypt of the Vampire,” there’s enough doomy and gloomy atmosphere here to scare the most rabid werewolf and enough raw, heavy ugliness to convince a metalcore band to go back to playing pop-punk.