Alkymist – Sanctuary (Review)

Alkymist - SanctuaryThis is the second album from Alkymist, a Danish sludge/doom band.

If you have a taste for a heavy, progressive mix of sludge and doom metal, then there’s a lot to enjoy on Sanctuary.

The band’s sludge influences provide heaviness in abundance, with crushing waves of rich distortion and harsh, throaty shouts. The doom influences allow for aspects of more traditional songwriting and lighter musical and vocal delivery to be merged with this, making for multifaceted songs with a lot to offer. Of course, the sludge and doom elements are combined quite thoroughly throughout; I’d say that Sanctuary has a core of doom metal that’s been enhanced with an abrasive sludge side, adding bite to the former, and softening the latter.

These songs are rich in emotion and atmosphere, blending the blunt heaviness of, say, American sludge metal with a European strain of doom that has just a pinch of the Gothic in some of the lighter moments. Textured with progressive creativity and immersive songcraft, the dark moods explored on Sanctuary work very well, and this is a very enjoyable and satisfying record.

Highly recommended.

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