Sludge Metal

Dark Buddha Rising – Mathreyata Review

Dark Buddha Rising – Mathreyata Review

Dark Buddha Rising is a Finnish band, formed in 2007 and packing six full-lengths and an EP under its belt. For a collective that channels drone, doom, and sludge (you’d be safe to throw some stoner doom in there too), their megalithic songwriting is surprisingly restrained, relying on simple bass riffs, distant vocals, and other instruments to communicate their psychedelic soundscape as it reaches a drone climax.” Buddha don’t play.

Ysgaroth – Storm Over a Black Sea Review

Ysgaroth – Storm Over a Black Sea Review

Ysgaroth is a “progressive extreme metal” band from Vancouver, their self-released Storm Over a Black Sea being their debut. While I’ve never entirely understood the phrase “extreme metal,” these Canucks throw everything and the kitchen sink into their poutine platter: black metal shrieks and tremolo, thrashy riffs, hardcore drumming, technical noodling, and avant-garde post-metal/sludge strangeness for a multi-car pileup with multiple fatalities.” Frequent wind.

False Gods – No Symmetry… Only Disillusion Review

False Gods – No Symmetry… Only Disillusion Review

“I’m the biggest Eyehategod fan I know, and sludge gets a bad rap. I get it: much like drone, if you just amp up the distortion to an 11/10 and know how to abuse the blues scale, you’ve got it made. Of course, there’s more nuance, like the need for facial hair, flannel, intoxicating substances, a shotgun, and some dark woods in the Deep South, but that’s just pedantic. My point is, you wouldn’t expect Crowbar-esque sludge from some dudes in New York, New York.” Empire expanding.

deathCAVE – Smoking Mountain Review

deathCAVE – Smoking Mountain Review

Smoking Mountain bills itself as a heady mix of doom, sludge and psychedelica. It’s named after a mountain just south of Seattle, which sounds suitably ominous. It also gives the listener a good idea of the density they’re about to encounter. In reality, it’s a fascinating spectacle of a band in a constant tug-of-war between glorious movement and the densest inertia. Will this turn out to be like a rugby scrum – full of effort but going nowhere (unless it’s England being pushed over by the mighty South African pack in the World Cup final)? Or do these competing forces light a serious fire?” Smoke and stone.

Pale Horseman – For Dust Thou Art Review

Pale Horseman – For Dust Thou Art Review

Pale Horseman have only been around for eight years, but For Dust Thou Art is the Chicago sludge quartet’s fifth album and their 2017 effort, The Fourth Seal, showed enough promise that I kept their name on my radar. I’m a fan of the (rather typical) influences I could hear on that record – early Mastodon, Neurosis, High on Fire – and thought the band was onto something good despite the overly long compositions. I’ve been looking forward to hearing how they hone their craft for the past three years now, hoping to hear them set themselves apart from what can often be considered a very homogeneous genre.” All we are is sludge in the wind.

MIGHT – MIGHT Review

MIGHT – MIGHT Review

“I’ve been wondering for the past several months when I might find myself reviewing promo altered or inspired by the global pandemic and quarantine life, and MIGHT just might be the first one in my hands. A mere two days before the planned start of recording of their new album, life as we know it came to a staggering halt. Lockdowns became the norm in Europe, and Ana Muhi (vocals, bass) and Sven Missullis (guitar, vocals, drums) decided to move into their studio and forge ahead with recording on their own terms.” COVID-core.