11Paranoias – Asterismal (Review)

11Paranoias - AsterismalThis is the fourth album from 11Paranoias, a UK sludge/doom band.

This is the follow up to 2016’s Reliquary for a Dreamed of World, which introduced me to 11Paranoias’ drugged out psychedelic existence.

Asterismal is the band’s new album, giving us 73 minutes of exceptionally drugged out psychedelic doom, wrapped up in sludge nightmares and intricate depth. This is probably the band’s most challenging and imposing work. Doom, drone, sludge, and experimental noise all collide in a kaleidoscope of esoteric exploration and expressive emotion.

There’s definitely an otherworldly, exploratory feel to this material. 11Paranoias are just as interested in worming their way into your skull via spacey melodies and psychedelic intensity as they are crushing it with monolithic sludge and pounding beats. Meditative and hypnotic, Asterismal is an album to lose yourself in completely, engrossed in the band’s expansive-yet-claustrophobic soundscapes. Apparently lead guitar is a theme on this album, and you can tell. It’s one of the standout elements on the release, for me.

Well, what can you say about this? It’s a real journey. I enjoyed Reliquary for a Dreamed of World very much, but Asterismal takes the band’s trippy doom insanity to another level entirely. However, I should also say that this work will certainly not be for everyone, and even the average doom fan might find the album’s twisting, labyrinthine ways and lengthy, imposing structures too impenetrable to truly take to. True doomheads will likely get as absorbed and wrapped up in Asterismal as the band clearly have while creating it, and there are a host of hidden gems to uncover in its sonic landscape.

Explore, experience, enjoy.

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