Northless – A Path Beyond Grief (Review)

Northless - A Path Beyond GriefNorthless are a sludge/doom band from the US and this is their fourth album.

I last caught up with Northless on their 2016 split with Primitive Man, so A Path Beyond Grief seemed an opportune time to check out the band once more.

Northless have created a textured album that combines merciless sludge with expressive doom, resulting in a 43-minute journey into dark waters filled with loss and pain. The journey is rich and nuanced, with colossal guitars and harsh shouts enriched with a variety of sounds and instruments, including clean singing, synths, and bassoon.

The band’s misery-drenched sludge is caustic and harsh, but not without atmospheric depth. The heaviness and crushing weight of distortion that I remember from past Northless work is intact and well. This has been enhanced with emotive elements that help take the material’s impact up a notch. These new songs are well-written and definitely some of the best that the band have produced.

This is the most multifaceted and compelling version of Northless that I have heard. Their new record is a very enjoyable and satisfying example of how to craft doom-laced modern heavy sludge with an engaging emotive side.

Highly recommended.

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