Sea of Bones/Ramlord – Split (Review)

Sea of Bones RamlordSea of Bones and Ramlord are both from the US. Sea of Bones play doom, while Ramlord play hardcore.

Sea of Bones have produced some monolithic, crushing doom/sludge metal in their time, so it’s with great joy that I prepared to listen to their half of this split – a single track named Hopelessness and Decay, lasting just under 11 minutes.

Slow and full of apocalyptic inevitability, the track unfolds at minimal speed, spewing dark vibes and catastrophic moods into the world.

Deep growls and harsh shouts are the vocal weapons of choice, sounding quite inhuman and as if they are coming from the abyss itself.

The pace begins to pick up a bit halfway though the song, getting heavier and more hurried, as if building to some unknown apogee, before slowing down once more.

As a mood piece of slow-moving despair and dark foreboding, this track once again sees Sea of Bones create effective sludgy doom with a bare-bones approach to building atmosphere.

Great stuff.

Ramlord play a virulent strain of blackened crust that sees them spreading their filth far and wide. Like Sea of Bones, their previous output has always been high calibre, so I was also greatly looking forward to their half of the split too – a 10 minute track named Incarceration of Clairvoyance (Part III).

After the droning intensity of Sea of Bones, it’s time for a different breed of extremity. Ramlord take the filthy, crusty underbelly of black metal and punk, lace it with a proto-metallic edge and vomit it forth on the world with all of the hate-fuelled venom that they can muster.

However, it’s worth noting that this doesn’t mean they are without subtlety or finesse; their contribution to this split is not completely wild and uncontrolled mayhem.

Ramlord take the listener through various versions of their hardcore assault, with different speeds, levels of heaviness and methods of aggression being readily explored.

Mainly upbeat and not lacking in barbed melodies, this is primitive punk mutated by blackened darkness and spread out over 10 minutes of occult malevolence.

Raw and underground, Ramlord continue to be one of the better purveyors of this kind of twisted combination of underground sub-genres.

The differences in the bands’ material complements each other nicely, and this is 20 minutes of music that’s worth hearing.

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