This torturously heavy UK trio Monoliths is so recently formed that I couldn’t dig up anything on them for weeks. Knowing that it was comprised of members from Bismuth, Moloch and Ommadon, however, enlightened me to my fate for the following half-hour.
Getting crushed by a Fuck-off monster of a traction engine. If our US cousins aren’t too sure what one of those is…well, it’s not an easy way to go. The first of two colossal tracks on début Monoliths (Dry Cough Records /Crown & Throne Ltd.), ‘Perpetual Motion’, begins and ends with a disturbing fuzz that leaves you in no doubt what’s coming and, in closing, what has just been. Tanya Byrne’s swerving bass thrum knocks you off your feet but, as the track ebbs and flows, nuances appear as mini-crescendos swirling around the mind. David Tobin’s solo breaks the Om-esque hypnosis which the terrifying riff and Henry Davies’ wondrously tempered drums hammer through the solar plexus, hardly breaking the lumbering pace yet bewitching the senses with its pulverising might. I’m not usually one for instrumentals but this carries me to far-off lands on the back of a yeti.
The monumental, everlasting pummel of ‘The Omnipresence of Emptiness’ takes a short while to move through the volume, and to that familiar bass bellow. Yet when the whole thing crashes together it is a life-ending implosion, carrying depth and weight suitable for the occasion. Missing the latent groove of its forefather, subsequently this is the harder track with which to find an immediate affinity until the most unnerving, horrifying roar introduces a shattering solo. It’s here where one realises the flattening power of the drums, while the other ingredients of this plundering sortie become so unfathomably heavy I completely lost where I was, bemused by the sheer weight yet moved by a scintilla of emotion.
Look, this is no epiphany. It is, however, a near-perfect slab of evil Doom and an excuse for lovers of this stuff to completely lose their shit. In making something usually so monotonous and pulverising sound immediate, occasionally moving, and unmissable, Monoliths prove themselves an essential addition to the Low-end canon.