ALBUM REVIEW: Resent – Crosshairs

Everything in Canada is supposed to be nice, right? That Trudeau bloke’s boyish grin; the clean, crisp air; the way the natives go ‘Eh’ at the end of a sentence in a wonderfully endearing way. Tell that to Resent. The 2018 demo from the Victoria, British Columbia based quartet was one of the most frightening exercises in putrid Sludge I’d ever encountered, and new album Crosshairs (Dry Cough Records / Nerve Altar / Rope Or Guillotine) promises only to extend the suffering…

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ALBUM REVIEW: Slave Hands – No More Feelings

Usually, Metal from Finland is incarcerated inside a cocoon of cold Death and/or melancholy. For the last seven years, however, Helsinki trio Slave Hands has rebelled against the norm to peddle a particularly horrific brand of Doom-flavoured Sludge, and No More Feelings (Dry Cough Records/Gate Of Deliria/Minor Obscure/Sewer Prison), the band’s fourth album in that time, continues down that solitary, diseased path. Continue reading

ALBUM REVIEW: Lord Mantis – Universal Death Church

It’s no secret that Charlie Fell has issues. Anyone reading the few interviews he gave to promote Death Mask (Profound Lore Records), his last outing with Chicago’s Lord Mantis prior to his acrimonious departure from the band, won’t fail to be staggered by some of the personal revelations feeding his lyrical contribution to that album. Coupled with the tragic loss of revered drummer Bill Bumgardner in 2016, it was hard to see a way for the soul of this truly disturbing entity to continue forward: yet here we are with Universal Death Church (Profound Lore Records), Fell back behind both bass and microphone and re-absorbed by the nucleus of Andrew Markuszewski, fellow returnee Ken Sorceron and honorary fifth member, vocalist Dylan O’Toole. Continue reading

Witchfinder – Hazy Rites

Satan rules!” states the bio of French Doom/Stoner trio Witchfinder. Dear, oh dear…more expected is the apparent devotion to hedonism and, on the band’s second album Hazy Rites (Black Bow Records), both are seemingly hallowed in equal measure. Continue reading

Blind Monarch – What Is Imposed Must Be Endured

From the first recording session through to the present day, it’s taken almost eighteen months for What Is Imposed Must Be Endured (Black Bow Records), the debut album from Sheffield-based quartet Blind Monarch, to see the light of day. In that time the band has shared stages with leading lights of the UK Death-Doom scene so it wouldn’t be a stretch of the imagination to suggest that this album is eagerly awaited. Continue reading

Endless Floods – Circle The Gold

When the words ‘experimental’ and ‘French’ precede the word ‘Doom’ in a preamble, surely it’s impossible to ignore. Bordeaux trio Endless Floods, formed by members of cult outfits Monarch and Bombardement, are such a band and third album Circle The Gold (Fvtvrecordings / Bigôut Records) sees them test their expansive minds to new, sometimes more melodic limits. Continue reading

Un / Coltsblood – Un / Coltsblood

When I heard about this particular collaboration, I swear a little bit of wee came out. Seattle’s Un is still reveling in the success of last year’s coruscating, moving Sentiment (Translation Loss Records), while Scouse / Scottish hybrid Coltsblood have laid waste to the UK Underground for the last five years. This split, therefore, promises to be a leveller on both sides of the Atlantic. Continue reading

Conan – Conjurer – Ba’al: Live at Rebellion, Manchester (UK)

“It’s Pink Floyd turned up to fifty”, my mate said. I’d never heard Waters or Gilmour roar with the same ferocity as Steff, lead vocalist of Sheffield quartet Ba’al, but the band do display a level of progression and turn of pace that would fit in with the Prog legends’ template. The phenomenal power and blackened hostility of the music, however, leaves any such comparisons in the shade. Continue reading