Sleep

Somnus Throne – Somnus Throne Review

Somnus Throne – Somnus Throne Review

“The mysterious and unidentified crew that make up Somnus Throne are said to hail from New Orleans, Texas and L.A., and on their eponymous debut they are content to allow their music to make the introductions for them. Listeners can expect to be greeted by psychedelic stoner doom in the vein of Sleep, High on Fire, and Mastodon, heavy on the massive riffage and song-lengths and light on innovation or originality.” Thronesmoker.

Laser Dracul – Hagridden Review

Laser Dracul – Hagridden Review

“Drawing on both the atmospheric doom of Black Sabbath and Witchfinder General’s stoner rock, Laser Dracul deal in dirty, lo-fi, rolling riffs, underpinned by the rumbling bass and rough, hollow cleans of Michael Brander. Sounding a bit like Dozer run through a Sleep filter, there is something oddly comforting about the sludgy rock on show on Hagridden.” Of lights and undead lords.

Void King – Barren Dominion Review

Void King – Barren Dominion Review

Void King is a four-piece stoner doom metal band from Indianapolis and Barren Dominion is their sophomore effort. Paying homage to doom greats like Sleep, Electric Wizard, and Goatsnake, while channeling amp- and pedal-abusing monoliths, these fucking stoners are set to drown listeners in THC-saturated waves of distortion. Do they succeed? Or will they end up only being the bulls-“high” of endless stoner doom puns?” Fuzz bombs.

Vokonis – Grasping Time Review

Vokonis – Grasping Time Review

Grasping Time is an album I’ve been keeping my eyes open for since 2018, when Swedish trio Vokonis re-released their 2016 album, Olde One Ascending. First, they spelled Olde correctly. Second, it was a damned fine debut, an oddly alluring progressive take on bands like Black Sabbath and Sleep, with a bit of Stooges and old Baroness mixed in. At that time, they stated they were working on a 2019 release, so I kept a sharp lookout, and lo! Here we are, with the band’s third album in hand.” Just like olde times?

Tar Pit – Tomb of Doom Review

Tar Pit – Tomb of Doom Review

“There is, at least to my ears, a point at which doom, stoner rock, and sludge all intersect, at which point it’s hard to definitively class a band one thing or the other. This is perhaps unsurprising, given the common roots these sub-genres all share in Black Sabbath, Pentagram, Trouble, et al. And it is this murky, fuzzy point of overlap that Portland, Oregon four-piece Tar Pit inhabit and do so quite knowingly and unashamedly.” Stuck in the pit.

The Mound Builders – The Mound Builders Review

The Mound Builders – The Mound Builders Review

“The break room at my real life place of employment has one of those old glass globe candy dispensers. It’s full of candy and only costs a nickel, but it goes largely unused by employees. No, not because millennials have never seen a nickel and the machine doesn’t take Venmo. It’s avoided because some sociopathic agent of chaos filled the thing with a mix of M&Ms and Skittles that are almost visually indistinguishable. Sure, both are independently enjoyable, but something about the idea of accidentally tasting them in combination, or getting one when you expect the other makes people dubious. The new eponymous album by Lafayette, Indiana’s The Mound Builders is the musical equivalent of this conundrum of expectations.” Sketchy candy.

Gorycz – Piach Review

Gorycz – Piach Review

“There are certain things that will always warm a music reviewer’s cold, dead heart. Poland’s Gorycz, for example, made a good impression on me immediately, as I opened the promo to an actual lyric sheet. Granted, that wasn’t much help with reviewing their debut, Piach, as my knowledge of Polish goes only a little further than “kurwa,” but it’s the thought that counts. The band choosing to write in their mother tongue was, in fact, only another point in their favor for a multiculturalism-loving cuck like myself.” First impressions matter.

Dark Ocean Society – Hymns for the Last Man Review

Dark Ocean Society – Hymns for the Last Man Review

“As a metalhead, I always feel way behind on doom metal and its various offspring genres. It was the last genre I discovered, and further the last one I gained a bone-deep understanding of. Imagine my surprise to find an untouched, independent stoner prog album sitting in the promo bin. Chicagoan band Dark Ocean Society is one of those projects—one-man, home recorded, totally independent; it is the brainchild of one C.M. Tedor. You know, the kind of project you’d expect to spit out a shitty black metal record. Instead, we have Hymns for the Last Man, a piece on alienation and the pain of life in the modern era.” One Hymn, some waiting.

Djinn and Miskatonic – Even Gods Must Die Review

Djinn and Miskatonic – Even Gods Must Die Review

“Well, this is an interesting completion of the circle. Djinn and Miskatonic’s Forever in the Realm was a number of firsts for me: first impulse-purchase of an album on band name alone, first real exposure to doom metal, first exposure to the burgeoning Indian metal scene, and the subject of a writing sample to This Very Mighty Website! That debut, stuffed to the gills with Sleep and Sabbath-esque riffage, was also unfortunately possessed of spotty songwriting and editing issues. Their sophomore album, Even Gods Must Die, promises a platter of six potent songs, this time with the Sleep influences dialed back to bring more Electric Wizard and Reverend Bizarre into the mix.” Djinn and doom juice.