2015’s Litany was a sprawling, ambitious album. It was also very good, although this new release is something quite new and special in some ways. The band have returned with the even more expansive and developed Elegy. Showing greater focus of delivery, (49 minutes vs Litany’s 73), Elegy is also wider ranging and boasts Continue reading
A new Inter Arma release is always welcome. 2014’s The Cavern was a stunning record that topped my end of year list, and although 2016’s Paradise Gallows didn’t ascend to the same heights, it was an album that I still deem as an essential listen, (and in hindsight should definitely have been higher up on 2016’s list). Continue reading
It’s always great to hear something new from this charismatic and individual band, and here we have 47 minutes of new material.
Back with their classic lineup, this is essentially a return to Corrosion of Conformity’s Deliverance/Wiseblood days, giving us 53 minutes of Southern metal mixed with good old-fashioned rock ‘n’ roll attitude. In many ways No Cross No Crown continues on from where Wiseblood left off, and Continue reading
Fat riffs and heavy groove. If this sounds like your thing, then make sure that you check out King Bison’s music. Continue reading
This is Southern-styled stoner/hard rock that should appeal to fans of bands such as Clutch, Red Fang, Mastodon, and the like. Continue reading
This is fuzzy doom rock with an addictive edge that lures the listener in, seductively, with wily allure.
A large part of this is down to the singer’s voice, which Continue reading
This is a riotous, rocking collection of tracks that offer high energy hooks and a filthy disposition.
Barkyard Junkyard is full of hard rocking tunes with plenty of swagger Continue reading
After a perfunctory intro the first thing that strikes me is their use of a long, winding guitar solo. Now I like a good guitar solo anyway, but Black Metal and guitar solos are not things that are normally associated with each other, so straight away we have a pleasant surprise.
After this promising start the band continue to deliver with Old-School Black Metal mixed with Southern Rock and even a dash of 70’s Prog. The songs are played at length and with belligerence, bluster and melody.
The riffs have character and swagger, seemingly jumping out of the speakers to kick you in the shins. There is a definite Blues-y, Rock-y air to the riffs; almost feel-good Stoner Rock combined with the nihilistic core of Black Metal. The melding of the two genres comes across differently in Zud’s work to how it does in, say, Glorior Belli; while the latter have a more overt approach to mixing the styles, Zud somehow manage to make it seem a more natural choice and the combination is seamless.
The singer spits his lyrics with character and personality. His voice is a non-standard Black Metal rasp; in fitting with the out-of-the-ordinary music Zud have a vocalist that embodies the unconventional approach that they take and is the perfect mouthpiece for the band.
They’re even on to a winner with the production; it’s dirty enough to be authentic but clear enough to allow the songs to do their thing. Top marks.
Favourite Track: Skull Shaped Bell. A microcosm for the album as a whole; it combines rawkus riffing, laid-back noodling and attitude to spare.
Like the aforementioned Glorior Belli this is a band who are daring to do something different; daring to go their own way. In a cesspool of mediocrity and Darkthrone-clones they embody the unfettered spirit of Black Metal far better than many of their so-called peers. An exceptional release.