Thursday, 23 March 2017

Green Meteor - Consumed By A Dying Sun (Album Review)


Release date: April 21st 2017. Label: Argonauta Records. Format: CD/DD

Consumed By A Dying Sun – Tracklisting

01. Acute Emerald Elevation
02. Sleepless Lunar Dawn
03. In the Shadow of Saturn
04. Mirrored Parabola Theory
05. Consumed by a Dying Sun

Members

Amy: Explorations of the 6 Degrees of Freedom
Tony: Anti-Gravitational Percussive Reverberations Through Time Space Continuum
Algar: Anti-Cosmic Astral Verses & Journeys into the 4th Dimension


Review

Another day and time for another release from Argonauta Records. This time with Green Meteor's debut album - Consumed By A Dying Sun. A band that play cosmic and spaced out Psychedelic Stoner/Sludge riffs. A band influenced by some of the most notable legendary bands of the last twenty to thirty years or so but with a more space rock edge.

Opening track - Acute Emerald Elevation - is a strong song to open the album with as it shows you the full picture of Green Meteor with heavy distorted SLEEP style riffs with a high amount of distortion being added at different parts of the song. The vocals adds different touch as I haven't heard many female led vocals within the Spaced Out Stoner Rock field. The psychedelic noises add a nice touch with the riffs and vocals building up to a heavy momentum. The lyrics aren't the most original you'll ever hear but they get the job done as Green Meteor providing a thrilling song to open the album with.

Second track - Sleepless Lunar Dawn - adds a spoken word soundclip that matches the out of world atmospherics the band are currently creating. This is perhaps the standout song on the album as Green Meteor create a barrage of fast paced riffs with the heavy guitars and drumming interacting almost perfectly with each other. The song lasts for ten minutes and you can't help but lose yourself in the epic spaced out riffs. The vocals impress yet again with a more confident approach compared to the opening track. The song offers its fair share of slow paced and fast paced riffs. Green Meteor impresses the most with the faster style of riffs as their music has a sense of urgency about them. The music becomes more focused as the band leaves the distorted noises behind.

Third track - In The Shadow Of Saturn - sees Green Meteor return to heavier distorted sound they opened the album with. This is a much more doomier and sludgier effort from the band. I don't know if it's just me but one part of the song sounds very familiar to Nirvana at times. Very good idea if this was intentional.

The final two tracks - Mirrored Parabola Theory and Consumed By A Dying Sun offers ten minutes of more psychedelic spaced out vibes with Consumed By A Dying Sun impressing the most. Mirrored Parabola Theory is perhaps the most straight forward Doom/Stoner Metal song on the album as Green Meteor opts for a Monster Magnet style delivery with their music though the vocals are slightly off key at times. Consumed By A Dying Sun has a more punk driven sound compared to the earlier songs. It's simple but so effective especially matched with the albums earlier sounds. A great song to end the album with.

The production of the album is good though there are a few parts where everything is too quiet at times. Other than that, Consumed By A Dying Sun is a loud, boisterous and thrilling album from start to finish. This will appeal to a wide range of fans within the Doom/Sludge/Stoner Metal community.

Words by Steve Howe

Thanks to NeeCee Agency for the promo. Consumed By A Dying Sun will be available to buy on CD/DD via Argonauta Records from April 21st 2017.

Links:

Wounded Giant - Vae Victis (Album Review)


Release date: April 01st 2017. Label: STB Records. Format: CD/DD/Vinyl

Vae Victus – Tracklisting

1.Vae Victis 09:30
2.Dysthiest 06:20
3.Immanentize The Eschaton (Jim Jones Instrumental) 04:43
4.Scum Of The Earth 07:03
5.The Room Of The Torch 07:36
6.Green Scar 06:09

Members:

Dylan A. Rogers. - Bassworshipper
Alex Bytnar. - Drumworshipper
Bobby James. -Riffworshipper

Review

Wounded Giant make a welcome return after a lengthy four year absence from their debut album - Lightning Medicine. Sure they've released an EP's and split record but this time they've come back stronger than ever with their new album - Vae Victis. Newly signed to STB Records, the guys have not only teamed up with that awesome label but they have also called upon the talents of legendary producer Billy Anderson to produce their new album.

Vae Victis sees Wounded Giant create a more diverse and progressive sound heard on their debut album. Though fans of their debut album will be treated to some familiar sounds spliced throughout the album. Vae Victis has a more Melvins/Soundgarden influenced style of sound. It works as their familiar Doom/Stoner riffs hold everything together.

The opening title track is ten minutes of twisted and distorted noise rock driven sounds that owes a huge debt to The Melvins but it's still a song that sees Wounded Giant create their own sound. The song is quite political at times with sharp, bleak and social conscience lyrics adding quite a rebellious punk feel to Wounded Giant's sound. The song offers moments of heavy pounding sludge grooves and it's perhaps the albums standout track. The sound is very raw from the start but with Billy Anderson involved it still sounds superb.

Second track - Dysthiest - offers a more gloomy style of Doom/Stoner Rock with grungier sounds making a commanding appearance with the band offering another subtle take on the modern world. The heavy drumming and guitars are the main standout with the vocals not too far behind. You can hear elements of nineties style Noise Rock slowly playing in the background as the band move that little further away from the music they created on their debut album. This has song has a more world weary approach but fans of Doom and Stoner Metal can fully appreciate this track.

Third track - Immanentize The Eschaton - is the most gloomiest and depressing song on the album as Wounded Giant blend gloomy atmospherics with a touch of Occult Rock appearing with the cool organs playing throughout. The band adds heavier moments as the song progresses. Another standout track on the album. The song has a very minimal approach but the political message contained within the song that speaks major volumes.

The final three songs on the album - Scum Of The Earth, The Room Of The Torch and Green Scar carry on the political and social messages the band delivers but told through the power of Doom, Sludge and Stoner Metal. The atmosphere can be very experimental at times as Wounded Giant play a wide different style of sounds though remaining a true Doom/Sludge/Stoner Metal band. The vocals are once again sung with precise anger and that blends perfectly well with the heavy grungy sounds the band surrender themselves to.

The final three songs range from six to seven minutes in length. So expect moments of pure distorted heaviness and sonic experimentation.

Truth be told, it took me a long time to fully appreciate this album as my first listen it left me rather cold by the whole experience. I've only enjoyed it with multiple listens and listening closely to the lyrics that I started to fully appreciate what an epic and stunning album this really is. My final thoughts on Vae Victis are that Wounded Giant has exceeded themselves with this album. As it's a spellbinding take on all things Rock, Metal and everything in between.

Excellent and Highly Recommended.

Words by Steve Howe

Thanks to Jadd for the promo. Vae Victis will be available to buy on CD/DD/Vinyl via STB Records from April 01st 2017.

Links:

Tuesday, 21 March 2017

An Interview with Kevin Lawry

Kevin Lawry started his musical activity with doom metal outfit Crowned in Earth in 2008. His debut album “Visions of the Haunted” was an example of traditional doom metal with guest appearance of drummer Darin McCloskey (Pale Divine and more). The record was released by Shadow Kingdom in 2010, and was not bad for a debut effort.

Those who already knew Crowned in Earth were surprised with the sophomore album “A Vortex of Earthly Chimes” – this time Kevin had combined his visions of doom metal with progressive rock influences that made band’s sound lighter and more complex in the same time. So it was natural that after third record “Metempsychosis” Kevin got rid of the doom elements in his songs and went to explore progressive territories alone.

I got chance to speak with him about past and present of his artistic life.

Hi Kevin! How are you? What’s going on in Crowned in Earth camp?

Hi Aleksey. I’m well thanks and hope that you are too! Crowned In Earth hasn’t existed since around the summer 2015.

Indeed i was thinking that you decided to rename band due to the switch on another musical direction...

I decided to call it quits with CIE, after the not being able to put together a full UK line up to play shows. I became very disenchanted with the whole business for a while and took a step back. I began writing new music at the beginning of 2016 and the songs had a feel all of their own. Although there were elements of CIE in the songs, the newer compositions had a much different feel. As I was playing all the instruments on the album, I decided why not just release the album as a solo album! These new songs would eventually make up my ‘The Shadows Stole The Dawn’ album which was released at the end of last year.


Will you play all parts alone again or do you have any guest musicians in mind?

As on ‘The Shadows Stole The Dawn’, I’ll be playing all the instruments myself. I’m happier and more confident now as a songwriter and musician to play everything. It means I have greater control over getting the sounds I hear in my head recorded.

We spoke with you really long ago, it was soon after release of Crowned in Earth debut “Visions of the Haunted”. Back then you played maximally traditional doom, but then… what did happen when the time has come to record the second album?

I was becoming more musically confident which is why there was such a massive leap in quality from the traditional doom sound of ‘Visions…’and to the more progressive sounds on ‘A Vortex of Earthly Chimes’.

There weren’t much keyboards on “Visions of the Haunted”, but their role grown a lot with the second album, how did you learn to use it progressive manner?

This all comes back to becoming more musically confident and striving to keep my music moving forward. I don’t like to make the same album twice! Naturally, as the sounds I wanted to hear were becoming more cinematic my keyboard playing came into the mix more.

There are strong progressive rock influences in “A Vortex of Earthly Chimes” album, was it easy to attract the attention of Black Widow Records?

I can’t remember the exact series of events now as we’re talking about something that happened nearly five years ago! I remember I spoke to Massimo (BWR owner) before he’d even heard the album and he was very keen to work with CIE. Once he’d heard the album, he was very excited and enthusiastic towards my music. At the time, it seemed the best way forward to sign with BWR.

Crowned In Earth – Ride the Storm

You recorded “A Vortex” with Darin McCloskey, he lives in the States, how did you get in touch with him?

We were put in touch with one another by Tim who runs the Shadow Kingdom Records label before we record the ‘Visions album’. Darin and I worked perfectly on that album so I was very keen for us to work together on the follow up ‘A Vortex’ album. Bar the first demo, Darin played drums on all the CIE recordings. He’s awesome!

How was it natural for you to switch from riff-oriented slow music to more complex compositions with richer arrangements and harmonies?

It all happened very organically, it wasn’t as if I decided I’m not going to play doom anymore. I think I’d become bored with playing the same style for so long and my love of 60’s and 70’s music started to influence my writing more.

How was it to work over "A Vortex" in the studio? Was it really different when you recorded “Visions of the Haunted”? Complex music demands complex approach, right?

It’s difficult for me to remember all the details now. I actually remember it being quite easy to record because I was having such a fantastic time arranging all the different sections. It certainly took longer than ‘Visions…’ to record and mix because it had a lot more going on in the songs.

Your lyrics changed as well, what kind of feelings did you express on “A Vortex”?

I was unhappy with a lot of ‘Visions…’, when I listen back to it I find it a very difficult listen. I was an unhappy person when I wrote those songs and my mood shone through on those recordings! Ha ha! I think I was feeling more inspired when I wrote ‘A Vortex’ and lyrically the lyrics were a snap shot of my thoughts at the time.

And your mood became even better on Metempsychosis! Do you have an author who inspires you as a poet?

I was very cheerful, for me, on ‘Metempsychosis’! I was in a very good headspace and the bright and colourful new sounds on that album most certainly inspired the happier lyrics. ‘Although, on ‘The Shadows…’ I was back to my melancholic grumpy best! The lyrics for ‘Metempsychosis’ came to me when I was out walking the countryside with my dog. This is where I write most of my lyrics and hear ideas for new music in my head. I then end up rushing back to my studio to try and remember what my ideas were!! I don’t have any authors or poets that I can say I look to for inspiration. The rural landscapes of where I live have always provided me with the most inspiration.

Crowned In Earth – Morning Light


As I understand you released Crowned In Earth third album “Metempsychosis” on your own. Didn’t you search for a label this time? Did this way of publishing the album justify itself?

Metempsychosis’ was an ambitious project and I couldn’t find a label that wanted to release the album in a way which I liked. I am very strong minded when it comes to my music and if something doesn’t fit right with me, then it doesn’t happen. My biggest issue with record labels these days is the lack of promotion. I can’t understand why promotion seems to be completely left up to the bands these days. It’s laziness really. At the time, I thought ‘Metempsychosis’ was the best music I’d ever written and I wasn’t prepared to let a label waste it.

Two friends of mine which I knew through the underground music scene in the UK had set up their own PR company called Imperative PR. I knew I could trust their judgement with regards to the albums press etc and decided to put the album out myself and then let them take care of the PR side. It worked perfectly, as I sold more copies of ‘Metempsychosis’ than the previous albums because they put together a fantastic press campaign to support the album. Both of my previous Record labels did little to no press whatsoever for the other albums and I think they suffered because of it. The labels didn’t make the money they wanted (as we all know this is a money business now, it’s not about putting a record out just because you love it!) and the albums didn’t get as much coverage so never reached the potential audiences they could have.

How do you value Crowned In Earth development on this album? It looks like if you finally get rid of all doom metal elements and start moving forward right to progressive rock realms.

I don’t consider myself a doom musician anymore. However, I see it as a very important part of my musical past. When I was working on ‘A Vortex’ my favourite parts to play and write were the progressive sections of the songs. I decided to keep that excitement of new sounds developing and so the doom was gone on ‘Metempsychosis’. I believe you can literally hear the development of my music from ‘A Vision…’, ‘A Vortex…’ and then ‘Metempsychosis’

Kevin Lawry – Fracture

Did people get the changes in Crowned In Earth music? Or did you rather find new listeners with “Metempsychosis”?

I think people who liked my music enjoyed what I did with ‘Metempsychosis’. The feedback I received was generally all very positive. I gained a lot of new listeners too who were more put off by the heavier side to some of my older music. I just wish I could have had the chance to play those songs live!

What are your plans for 2017? Do you already have new record in your mind?

I’m actually in the early stages of putting a new album together. This will be my second solo recording. It’s going to be somewhere in between what I did with ‘The Shadows Stole The Dawn’ and the bigger more epic sounds of ‘Metempsychosis’. It’s aspiring to be an extremely energetic album with lots of interesting twists and turns. It’s definitely going to be a record for lovers of the golden era of 70’s progressive rock.

You’ll be able to keep up to date with everything at 


Words by Aleks Evdokimov and Kevin Lawry

BASK - Ramble Beyond (Album Review)


Release date: March 24th 2017. Label: This Charming Man Records (EU) / Self Aware Records (US). Format: CD/DD/Vinyl (Vinyl – due for release May 2017).

Ramble Beyond – Tracklisting

Asleep In the Orchard - 7:34
Mush! Carry Me Home -6:57
A Graceless Shuffle - 4:48
The Lonesome Sound - 6:39
Kindled Green - 5:45
In the Black Fir - 7:35

Band Members

Scott Middleton
Jesse Van Note
Ray Worth
Zeb Camp

Review

Bask is a band with the competence and confidence to usher you into a warm, luminescent netherworld with their original style, incredible power and radiant beauty. This album has a farther reach and a more top grade quality than its predecessor, however it doesn’t stray far afield from the band’s sacred heart signature sound. This is a psychedelic hard rock tour through the great American highlands.

This album is never hard to grasp, owing to it’s hearty, polished sound with all the fixings. It reminded me of many warm summer days in the past when I would sit cozily in the backseat of my father’s dilapidated sedan and listen to old 8-tracks on it’s antique tape player...the discovery of splendour, delivered in stereo. The songs are as catchy as the common cold, yet divergent as a strain of influenza.

Asleep in the Orchard is a song of graceful resonances attributed to the lovely glide of elastic fingers along a tolerant fret board. The background is awash with ambient sounds, muscle bound bass and grandiloquent drums. The collective vocal delivery is analogous to pouring several different carafe-filled varieties of preheated maple syrup on eager awaiting waffle squares.

Mush! Carry Me Home is pure transference of energy. The instruments build a great fire as the clement singing rises higher and higher with angelic delight. This is a refreshing dip in a glazed reservoir of rejuvenation; a phenomenon reserved for the giant, mournful, mystical buffalo. This song is a tremendous accomplishment that is expressed in only a short brace of melodic minutes.

A Graceless Shuffle is a buoyant tune. It is an almost cheerful track with flavorings of an uppity and mighty chunk jam at about the halfway mark. The end has some real explosive chemistry with its conjoint lyrical and musical structure.

The Lonesome Sound incorporates guitars that tear you open and cauterize you at the same time. The drums offer quirkiness with a punch and the bass is as fluid as a serene waterfall. The vocals stir emotion and astonish your ears. This is pure harmonious acupuncture.

Kindled Green is a dramatic arrangement of distorted riffs and ever so gracious choral passages. Phosphor burns bright this substance excited through smoky mountain pine tree secretion.

In the Black Fir is a magnificent steed of a song comprised of calm guitar strums, easy leads, and low-level distortion. This stallion reaches its stride without a startle.

Bask is a band that makes a house a home. They reveal a memorable, familiar sound, with an open invitation to join in and form a meaningful relationship with them through a gift…that gift being their own brand of music. It is impossible to ignore this musical offering and, regardless of righteous support, they will remain embraced with their curiosity, avoid frustration and endure along the exultant continuum. 

This is some of the best material written by any band; evidenced through above average songwriting ability, a passionate, lyrical intelligence and heartfelt, musical talent. This is a remarkable demonstration of melodic genius created by a shrewd horde of big-footed giants…behold and bear witness to legends among villagers!

Words by Nick Palmisano

Thanks to This Charming Records for the promo. Ramble Beyond will be available to buy on CD/DD/Vinyl via This Charming Man Records (EU) and Self Aware Records (US) from March 24th 2017. Vinyl will be released on May 19th 2017.

Links:

The Obsessed - Sacred (Album Review)


Release date: April 07th 2017. Label: Relapse Records. Format: CD/DD/Vinyl

Sacred (Deluxe Album) – Tracklisting

1.Sodden Jackal
2.Punk Crusher
3.Sacred
4.Haywire
5.Perseverance of Futility
6.It's Only Money
7.Cold Blood
8.Stranger Things
9.Razor Wire 03:32
10.My Daughter My Sons
11.Be the Night
12.Interlude
13.On So Long (Bonus Track)
14.Crossroader (Bonus Track)

Review

Greetings all,

I haven't been this excited to review a record since my first review last year. This time around I have the brand Obsessed record Sacred. If you are reading this I am going to make the assumption you know all about The Obsessed, so there is no need to hit the back story, I'll only point out that this is the first new Obsessed over 20 years, as Wino found himself busy with the Hidden Hand, solo records, Premonition 13, and a return to St. Vitus, amongst various other projects. There is no need to beat around the bush, this record is absolutely amazing.

To start, the songs are killer. If you were afraid of a mediocre reunion type album, put those fears to rest. It is just Wino and the boys dropping 14 masterful tracks of doomed out rock The band sounds absolutely phenomenal. The guitars are loud and dense with riff after riff just pelting you into submission. The rhythm section is tight. And to top it all off, Wino sounds amazing, he sounds as good as he did 20 years ago, honestly, maybe even better. Also, I have to point out the production, this is one of the cleanest sounding records I have heard in a long time, but the real kicker is that it still manages to sound stunningly raw and intense. Not over produced or under produced, just awesome.

As far as the songs themselves go, while bringing the heavy from beginning to end, I would have to say that the record has more of a 70's classic rock feel, as opposed to an overly doom rock sound. Trust me it is still there, so fans won't be disappointed in the least. The record is a sprawling hour long ride through dark, forgotten underbelly. But it is truly glorious. There are 14 tracks (12 with 2 bonus tracks noted, I assume depending on format) and not a clunker in the bunch.

So here we go, the album opens with an absolute 1-2 punch. The title track Sodden Jackal is a true doom rock gem, reminiscent of prior records. A solid reminder of just who exactly you are dealing with here. The album continues pounding away with Punk Crusher, Sacred, Haywire and Perseverance of Futility. All absolutely killer, rock tracks. Sacred hits you in the face from the first note and does not let up.

It's Only Money, is an interesting call and response rocker, that shines a dark light on what sadly drives the world. Cold Blood is a bad ass instrumental, with a monster riff that leads in to another absolute killer, Stranger Things. This song is a slow, catchy as hell jam. Before the band unleash the catchiest track of the album with Razor Wire.

The band brings the heavy again with My Daughters My Sons. Be the Night is some more classic up-tempo Obsessed rock. After the brief instrumental Interlude comes the giant sized doom laden riff of On So Long. Probably the most old school doom song on the record. The closer is a heavy blues inspired track called the Crossroader.

I can't recommend the new Obsessed record enough. If you are a long time fan, or new to the game, do your self a service and pick this up. Sacred is a stellar addition to The Obsessed/Wino catalogue. Check it out!

Words by Todd Stealey Instagram @alltheghoststhathauntyou

Sacred will be available to buy via Relapse Records on CD/DD/Vinyl from April 7th 2017.

Links:

Facebook | BandCamp

Saturday, 18 March 2017

OHHMS - The Fool (Album Review)


Release date: March 31st 2017. Label: Holy Roar Records. Format: CD/DD/Vinyl

The Fool – Tracklisting
1.Shuffle, Cut and Reveal
2.The Magician
3.The Hanged Man
4.The World
5.The Lovers
6.The Hierophant

Band Members

Chainy Chainy - Bass
Max Newton - Drums
Daniel Sargent - Guitars
Marc George - Guitars
Paul Waller - Vocals

Review

OHHMS’ full-length debut is a journey of musical composition, through doom metal fact and progressive rock fiction. The record is appropriately furnished with different tracks that all morph to create a successful album. We are essentially all fools in that many of the answers to our own questions are carried within us or just within our grasp, however we require an outside storyteller to guide or understand our expedition. This is an impressive album, analogous to this previous belief, with numerous harmonious symbols of the Tarot that specifically tell and foretell one’s excursion through a heavy, encyclopedic progression of sludge rock. At one point I was almost possessed to tear up my wooden floor just to walk over the naked earth beneath and discover my destiny through a shuffle of the cards. To the songs…

Shuffle, Cut and Reveal - the opening track is an acoustic interlude with a touch of troubling sounds. The perfect preface to your own prophecy foretold.

The Magician - this track embodies a technique that separates the song like a cleaver through warm bread. The overall gloomy crust contains a deep, wading raw power of doom infused with resonant vocals both mixed up with passionate sticky parts and a call to the dark arts. This magician’s song is an essential task, the goal of which is to transform underlying musical sensations into your own character interpretations. There is a power exchange here between the band’s composition and the listener’s elucidation; your path of choice will either send you on a voyage to meet saints or greet demons.

The Hanged Man - This track ‘s tremendously atmospheric inception is an invitation to a heavy, rudimentary styled song that throws waves of raw distortion against an old wooden wall that is thirsty for moisture of any kind. The vocals are raspy and full of angst. The drums topple like an avalanche of falling bricks but never miss a beat at the touchdown mark. The tail end of the song is pure fulfilment. All in all, a great song that makes one feel young and virulent, despite the subject matter, but I guess rage will do that to desperate men. You are only hanged if upside down and those precious moments bring lucidity.

The World - a song of machine riffage accompanied by well placed vocal/instrument explosions, stretched out softer sequences with indulgent singing passages and an echoed end. Cosmic completeness.

The Lovers - a melodious, mesmerizing tune of male and female vocals that is overflowing with emotion centered around the core which is the ultimate decision to forge a relationship built on certain sacrifice towards lasting potential.

The Hierophant - The last track is a masterful metal benediction. An ambient soundscape incorporates monk like chants that build the bridge between heaven hums and earth tones. These papal shamans understand the balance of distortion and clarity, providing a nurturing listen. The band’s identity is solidified on this track and they are at peace in their own church constructed without cluttered pews. You have been blessed, so feel unbroken and perpetual again. If you listen to ‘The Fool’, OHHMS rule…

Words by Nick Palmisano

Thanks to Claire at Purple Sage PR for the promo. The Fool will be available to buy on CD/DD/Vinyl via Holy Roar Records from March 31st 2017.

Links

No Fooling Around - An Interview with Paul Waller from OHHMS


OHHMS have become one of my fave bands from the UK scene since their inception in 2014. OHHMS blend elements of Noise, Post-Rock, Doom, Drone, Sludge and Stoner sound and create something original. Since then they have released two acclaimed EP's with Bloom and Cold.

OHHMS have became one of the must see acts on the live arena with their uncompromising performances that's earned then plaudits from fans and critics alike.

OHHMS are about to release their epic new album – The Fool. A politically charged and emotionally involving album that sees OHHMS at their most creative and most passionate. I caught up with lead vocalist – Paul – recently to discuss the making of the album.

Hi Paul. Thanks for doing this interview. How things with you. Congrats on the new album.

It's one of those things that everyone has spoken to us about the album has been really positive. We haven't had any negatives. Apart from the initial findings from our management. Journalists and fans have been very excited about it. The management were the first people that said - “We've haven't heard it yet but someone said it's very underwhelming”.

That was just when Radio 1 put out the “The World”. A promoter in Leeds said it was very underwhelming. That was our very first bit of feedback. We were thinking “SHIT”.

The album is getting a lot of buzz from the Doom Community. Have you heard this yourselves.

Yeah we've heard. It's the first time we have interest from places like America and a few different promoters and magazines asking about it. I don't know if that's down to ourselves stepping up the promotion or people are genuinely interested in the album. We just don't know.

The sound and tone of the album varies from song to song..As it's quite different to your previous EP's.

We started to go off on a tangent at the song “Dawn Of The Swarm” that was on COLD. Flip-side to The Anchor. We loved doing that. We loved performing that. We went mad in the studio. So many overdubs and soon we started playing again in the rehearsal room. It sounded shit compared what we released on record. We decided to continue this sort of thing but so we can perform this stuff live. That was the trick.

You're quite right. If you hadn't listened to those EP's or seen us perform live. This will be a shock as two of the tracks are around the 20 minute mark. The lengthy stuff is not like the forefront now. We did write our longest ever song but it's a world apart from our earlier sounds on Anchor And Bloom which are firmly in the Doom Metal camp.

Was that the intention to do something different for for this album. Did you have a plan of some kind.

It's never the intention to do something different or to go into recording something with a plan. We stockpile riffs up and we go through them. Some of them we love and others we just bin. We go into the studio work on those ideas and insert the riffs into the right songs. I know other bands from our genre write the same way. What I found interesting that it was completely natural as we wrote The Magician. We wrote that song before we wrote Dawn Of The Swarm that appears on Cold.

That song was always there but we were always concerned about it. On one of the tours we had Jon from CONAN driving us around. He played “Reveangence” before it came out with the demos. Of course that album is not quite blast based riffs but actually thunderous beats. We played our song “The Magician” and we've been playing that 6 months by then. We just thought then “Fuck's Sake”

So yeah, it's that old but at the same time we've written newer songs on this album. The songs are Doom/Stoner-ish sounds and so much more as well. I hate that Post-Metal tag even though we have similar sounds to bands from that genre.

It's strange. I don't know what people will make of it. I hope they don't think it's too much of a leap. It will take a few listens. If you stream a track here and there I don't know if you will get it right away. You will need to listen to the album to appreciate it more. Give it a few listens.


The Hanged Man can be very bleak and political at times. What influenced you when writing that track.

The songwriting came first with that track. It was really strange as it's an angry track but I wasn't angry when writing the song. I was at work and I walked past a copy of one of the British Daily Newspapers. and I read the headline. I know these newspapers can be shit and god-damn awful. Though I never knew how awful and shit they actually are. They're very sneaky with this horrible headline. It was scaremongering about Immigration and Borders.

So I read through this article and I researched further. This wasn't the only newspaper doing this and I was amazed that this was legal the stuff they were printing. I got furious with this newspaper headline and people buy this stuff day in and day out. It shocked me that people read and believe this stuff.

That night there was a Documentary on TV that night about the Hillsborough Tragedy. Again it showed the headlines that The Sun came out with at the time. It was shocking and disturbing yet again. I thought that's it. That's what the song was going to be about. I made a phone call to the guys, arranged a quick rehearsal the next day. That was it. It was done.

It was really exciting as that was the first time I've written when I was angry. It all worked out on the end and it sounded great.

It was also the first time that Max (Drums) brought in some electronic weirdness. He manipulated bass and drums sounds electronically. He sampled other things as well. It was a true collaborative effort from everyone.

One of my favourite parts of that song is when the mood becomes quiet and you perform very loud pissed off vocals.

When they wrote that in the studio it was one of those moments when you say – WOW. You get so excited and it's one of those moments that opened upto a world for me that challenges me. I know where to ROAR and where to sing. The band make my life so easy.

You spent a hell of a long time recording this album. Over a year and a half I believe. How did it take that long. Did you every think it would ever get finished.

No not at all. We had the plan from the start. The album took 18 months to record. The artwork we've been working on for two years.. Those Tarot Cards we were getting one a month. That was the plan to begin with. We are basing the album around the Tarot. We had 22 song titles to choose from.

The reason why it took so long to record was because of finances. We didn't have the money and we knew it would cost a few grand.. Holy Roar isn't the type of label that will upfront money to record the album. The way they work is totally DIY. We get paid from the records and merch we sell at shows. We don't lose any money which is great.

Every time we written two songs we would go back into the studio and record. We would then do the same for the next two songs until the album was fully recorded. It also allows us to revisit what we record six months down the line and we can say – Lets Change That. Even on the last day of recording – we had to overdub some vocals. We changed the way I sing a line on The Magician as Max said I sounded like Bruce Dickinson.

You've gone a too bit “IRON MAIDEN” - Paul. So I overdubbed half of a line that I recorded six months earlier. So it didn't' warble like Bruce Dickinson like he does. I did it in one take and Max said – Done. That's it.

It had bugged him for that amount of time and he didn't tell me. It's a mad way to do it but I think it works. It was a big long project. It's a weird way to run a band with everyone having all these plans. It's the way we work.


Your vocals very different on this album. More mature and more confident if you don't mind me saying. How did you prepare for your vocals for this album.

This is so embarrassing. I had to take vocal lessons. I found it excruciating singing in front of an old lady on a piano. I was fine touring for four days but on the fifth day I was struggling and by the sixth day I was wrecked. I needed to learn control. By learning to control my voice I can hear notes that I couldn't hear before.

During this process I also learned to harmonize. I never even thought about that. Now it comes naturally. Not many other bands are doing. Thanks for pointing that out and noticing as I've put a lot of hard work and effort into this. Funny story is I now do vocal warm-ups and the only chance I get to do it is in the van. The guys hate it. I'm doing my vocal exercises for a good fifteen minutes but the whole band are begging me to stop.

As a vocalist. It's good fun. It's exciting as I'm learning some pretty cool and exciting techniques.

We have to talk about the song that will surprise people the most on the album. The Lovers. Who is the superb female vocalist that appears on it.

I written a song from an article I read in the article in The Independent. It was the most twisted and fucked up love story. I don't know about love. It was all about arranged marriage in Africa. This woman was meant to marry this gentlemen. He was quite controlling and she wasn't in love with him. So it was always going to end badly. The reason why it ended up in the newspaper is because the gentlemen's brother was the lady's confidante and close friend. They weren't in love or anything. Just good friends.

This made the husband very jealous. He went to see the village elders and convinced them she was a witch. Long story cut short – She got stoned to death. It was such a freaky story and the husband admitted afterwards it was all down to jealousy.

Daniel had this little loop that was originally going to be the intro to Dawn Of The Swarm. He binned it as we had a better intro to it.

The vocalist is called Sienna Holihan. She's a folk artist and I first heard her supporting some band at an indie gig. I was blown away and I asked Sienna after the gig would she be interested and she was.

When Sienna was in the studio, she sang it in a different way that I envisioned it. Turns out I was singing it on the off and Sienna was singing it properly. It works.

You're going on tour soon in with HARK and BOSSK separately. You looking forward to that tour. What can people expect.

We've been trying to do some shows with HARK for a very long time. I'm a big fan of TAINT. His voice and his roaring is incredible. That was a no-brainer. We try to arrange a European Tour but it didn't' work out. Finally Jimbob came up and said we have 4 days that the guys can get off work. Do you want in.

We immediately say YES.

The same thing happened with BOSSK. Even though they've done a few shows here and there. They don't tour very often. They've done one proper tour since they reformed in two years. We still feel we're the new kids on the block. Both of these tours are built at joint headline tours. It's weird as we don't think deserve this as we don't have an album out yet. HARK and BOSSK have great albums out. It's nice to be asked in that context.

I know people come upto us after gigs and chat to us. Though people do that with every band. It's a weird and good feeling at the same time.

Well Paul thanks for doing this interview. All the best with the new album. It's a killer record.

Cheers and Thank You.

Words by Steve Howe and Paul Waller

Thanks to Claire at Purple Sage PR for arranging this interview. Thanks to Paul from OHHMS for doing this interview. The Fool will be available to buy on CD/DD/Vinyl via Holy Roar Records from March 31st 2017.

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