Zaraza play experimental industrial-tinged doom/sludge metal. Slow, dreary, and utterly without hope. Continue reading
Barrabus play an individual style of enhanced rock that sees their delivery sit somewhere between that of Faith No More, Rabies Caste, Every Time I Die, and Dead Kennedys. It’s a somewhat eclectic mix that actually comes together in a highly cohesive manner across the album. Continue reading
Nightslug sound as their name suggests – ponderous and heavy. This is discordant, ugly Sludge that grips you by their hair and forces your face into the vomit. This, of course, is something you like. So eat it all up. Eat it now.
The songs have a good groovy swagger and the guitars steal the show with their cocky bravado and murky heaviness. The vocals shouldn’t be discounted, however, as they sound like the aural equivalent of an acid splash to the face.
The bass makes its presence felt like a steel girder that props everything up and works with the guitars to create a solid and crushing foundation for the songs to destroy everything around them.
Feedback, distortion and an overall dirty, grim aesthetic is par for the course with Sludge but Nightslug do it with style. They have a slightly unusual sound in their guitar tone and the way the vocals are mixed. It works exceedingly well though, and gives them a distinctive flavour. It reminds me of, (although sounds different from), the production of Rabies Caste’s début album Let the Soul Out and Cut the Vein, which also had an atypical sound. Like Rabies Caste though, they have taken the Sludge template as handed down by Eyehategod and made it firmly their own.
Also like Rabies Caste, Nightslug specialise in songs that are incredibly catchy and memorable. Certainly not in a radio-friendly way, of course, but these are riffs and tunes that stick in the head like an infected nail. It’s painful, but a twisted stroke of master workmen and the Sludge Gods should be proud of them.
I love a good Sludge band and Loathe will be firmly a part of my playlists for some time to come.
This is one you must check out.
Favourite Track: Vile Pigs. With a main riff that just won’t quit, this song is as catchy as Hell.
Blending the claustrophobic swirl of Neurosis with the exploratory mindset of Tool and a touch of the Avant-Garde, Wells Valley have created an album that plays by its own rules and lives by its own aesthetics. I think the closest comparison would kind of be a cross between Rabies Caste and Scarlet.
This is not a normal album, and I mean that in an entirely good way. The band have chosen to take a sub-genre that has pretty lax rules at the best of times and experiment with it to create something that may not be entirely new but it’s as close as we can reasonably expect these days.
The band play around with the Post-Metal formula just enough so that Matter as Regent sounds innovative and fresh, but not so much that it strays to far from what makes Post-Metal such a compelling and interesting listen.
The music is involving and engages the brain as it twists and turns through its various incarnations. The band write songs that seem to be mutations of the standard template; it’s as if the music has been stripped back to the bare bones of the style and then rebuilt in Wells Valley’s vision of what this kind of music should sound like.
The emphasis on the diversity, dynamics and pacing of the songs on Matter as Regent is noticeable, both in the music and the vocals. They don’t seem to like to repeat themselves too often.
The guitars are set to a level where they’re intense and emotive without being overly heavy. Expansive riffs and atypical rhythms run the gamut from expressive to functional to esoteric; there’s enough instant appeal to be endearing but enough depth of composition to keep you returning for more.
Wells Valley have released an intriguing and ambitious album that not only largely succeeds in being greater than the sum of its parts, but also achieves the even greater accolade of sounding mainly like itself.
Wormwood play abraisive and caustic Sludge that eats away like acid and is every bit as disfiguring.
The songs aren’t long but they don’t need much exposure to be proven toxic.
It’s ugly, crushing music that’s no good for your health and yet is strangely addictive regardless. The songs infect with their virulent strand of aural disease and you find yourself thinking of them when you least expect, usually when the night is in full swing and the negative thoughts are swirling. Wormwood is the soundtrack to hopelessness and woe.
The songs are surprisingly catchy and their relatively simplistic approach of groove-based, heavy Sludge is tried and tested yet by no means less effective because of it. Eyehategod may have originally wrote the book but bands like Wormwood keep adding pages.
Wormwood lack Eyehategod’s Southern tinge of course, and theirs is a sound that shares aspects of Today is the Day and Rabies Caste in particular, as mentioned above.
A warm, yet musty, analogue sound coats all of the songs like a soft, ripe, fleshy exterior. It sounds good.
At only 18 minutes in length this is a release that doesn’t outstay its welcome; one to definitely keep returning to.