to eleven


Review: Windhand – Windhand by Jayson
January 2, 2012, 12:25 pm
Filed under: Metal, Review | Tags: , ,

Windhand album cover

Ah… this was out in September. I can’t really explain why I didn’t review it then. I apologize for that.

Ok, so fun fact about me: I hate trad doom. It’s not something I scream from the top of the mountains, mostly because I don’t want to razz the legions of trad doom fans out there, some of whom are pals. I think it’s because a lot of what I’ve heard, even some of the really admired stuff in the genre, skews more toward “doing my Ozzy impression” than “this is the stylistic basis of my approach to music.” It’s a focus on duplicating the sounds of a specific band at a specific moment in time, rather than the deeper level of the stuff that basically made doom, doom.

My point in even bringing all that up is that Windhand ain’t do any of that. They’re playing trad doom crafted in the tradition of their mightiest forebear(s), not auditioning for a Sabbath cover band. Yeah, the riffs are crushing and the vocals eerie, but this is managing to feel both fresh and familiar at the same time. This is one of those records that is so good it doesn’t need a masters thesis of a review. This slays.

Buy it from Forcefield Records. Do this now.

– Jayson



Review: Eibon – Entering Darkness by Jayson

Eibon was recommended to me via a good friend of the blog, and an excellent recommendation it was. Like Vit, Eibon are taking elements from black, doom and progressive metal and creating some excellent music. Entering Darkness is an interesting ride. Rather than merge the elements that the band is choosing to incorporate into their sound into a unified sound, Entering Darkness unfolds along a spectrum, where a mixture of styles bleeds into the next. Toward the start of the album, the black metal influence is the strongest. Even though it persists in the vocals, there’s an almost a blacknoise thing going on. Angry, dissonant sounds bleed into a more leaden doom influenced sounds, followed by a marked move into prog territory, where things almost reminiscent of Isis are happening.

Brilliant stuff.

Entering Darkness is also available from Media Tree Recordings as a limited edition cassette with the band’s self-titled EP.

CDs and other stuff available from the band’s website.

– Jayson



Review: Batillus – Furnace by Jayson
April 27, 2011, 10:16 am
Filed under: Metal, Review | Tags: , , , ,

Ok, yeah. The things you need to know here are that I was (still am, really) a huge supporter of Batillus and their past releases. Their Beard Destroyer Tour EP (EP 2) was in my Top 10 for 2009. You also need to know I do not like it when bands change the sound. I just never react well to it; always with this visceral “that’s not why I like you!” To be really really honest, I winced when I found out Batillus was adding a vocalist. I felt worse when other writers started describing the new style as black metal. I avoided listening to any previews, and while I was excited to get the album, I was really expecting not to like it.

It’s a great album.

Whatever issues I might have been having were really, really pointless because there was nothing to worry about, Batillus did it again. Fade Krainer’s vocals really are perfect addition to their sound. I sort of can’t emphasize that enough. The vocals didn’t change Batillus’ sound at all, they added it to it, improved it; even more than simple addition. The band sounds exponentially more powerful on Furnace. The band still sounds amazing. One of the things I enjoy most about Batillus is that despite how powerful their sound is, they still deliver quieter, more subtle moments with an extremely deft touch.

The Division

Get this.

Available from Seventh Rule. 

– Jayson



The Wizard by Jayson
February 4, 2010, 3:37 pm
Filed under: Metal | Tags: , ,

Electric Wizard. This band is pretty entry level for being into doom metal. However they’re also one of the most classic, genre defining bands.

So if you’re not listening to the Wizard, now is the time to start.

The thing about this band is you must listen to them as loudly as possible, but under the mammoth wall of noise, there is some great rock n’ roll going on.

They’ve got a new one coming out this year too, can’t wait.



Doom by Jayson
February 4, 2010, 10:15 am
Filed under: Metal, MySpace | Tags: , , , , , , ,

2009 was some awesome year for doom metal. Let’s recap some highlights.

First we have the mighty Batillus, who were an album of the year band for me.

Dark Castle, who just got edged out.

The Devil and the Sea.

This is what’s great about living in the future. Of these three, two were brought to my attention by Metal Sucks and one by Decibel. I checked them out on MySpace. Then I checked out their friends, which brought me more great music like

Graves at Sea

Samothrace

And Salome, who I think are going to be big in 2010.

You’re a few clicks away from being aware of the best in contemporary doom metal.