I’m a firm believer in the magical powers of sound & it’s ability to heal. One band that has proved this is the Bay Area band OM. They rose from the ashes of Sleep, but they made their own sonic foot print. I remember the first time I ever smoked a spliff to one of their recordings, and my mind traveled to a new vortex of reality. OM proved to me that there are so many different limbs that make up the body of doom. Whenever I listen to this band, I find myself communicating with my past lives. OM also have a transcendental vibe to their music. The word on the planet is that OM are recording a new album that will be out sometime this year via Dragcity. In the meantime, CVLT Nation would like to celebrate this band with mammoth video essay!
Photos by John Currie
A tiny room is invaded by a great voice and tons of imagination – this is what took place when one of CVLT Nation’s favorite singers, Chelsea Wolfe, took over Room 205. She created an alternate universe where she was able to provide visuals that are married to her haunting and mesmerizing voice. What’s really cool about this experience is that everything is recorded live, so you’re hearing awesome versions of compositions you already dig. For this occasion, Chelsea chose to perform “Pale on Pale,” “Demons” and “Movie Screen.” Watching these videos is straight eye candy, and gives a whole other dimension to Chelsea Wolfe’s vision. So below and after the jump, step into Room 205.
On Febuary 21st, Pallbearer will unleash their new album, Sorrow and Extinction, onto the the universe via Profound Lore. So many thoughts and words come to my mind when I listen to this record, and it’s been hard to decide how am I going to describe it to the world. My first thought is of a sunset, where the the sun meets the ocean and the sea shows you how vast the world is. Pallbearer’s songs are never-ending bodies of water, that are heavy but flow in beautiful motion. Sorrow and Extinction is a record that will rain melodic soul down all over you and allow light to break through the clouds of your aura. In this age, where everything is pre-fab and artificial, Pallbearer have created an album that is a vehicle to a different mindstate. When did I realize that this would become one of my new favorite albums? I think in the first two seconds of the first song, “Foreigner.” The guitar intro to this song is so fantastic, it make this ugly world not seem so bad. The same tune opens up into the sky and becomes a huge storm with enchanting vocals and a mesmerizing baseline. What’s impressive about this band is that you can hear their influences, but at no time do you ever feel like they are not being honest with you. The sweet wall of feedback that greets you at the beginning of “Devoid of Redemption” is the bong, the groove that this song packs is the best bud I have smoked all year, and Brett Campbell’s electric vocal performance is the fire. When I hear this song, I see the light. Since all of their compositions are over 8 minutes, that gives them time for the mammoth breakdowns! Make sure to buy your ticket to everywhere, because the riffs on this album will have you travel to some far out places. Under all of the magic lies the monolithic drumming that holds all of their songs together. What do I want this summer? An outdoor festival, bong loads, loved ones, weirdos and Pallbearer playing this album in full. Now that’s what I call a good day!
I have listened to Possession, CHRISTIAN MISTRESS‘ debut album, at least once a day since we got the promo. The album will be out on February 28th via Relapse, and it makes me sad to think that people haven’t heard it yet, because this album fucking rocks. Christian Mistress play metal with the soul of classic rock – wailing vocals and guitars, and drumbeats that make you want to get stoned and dance behind a wall of flailing hair. Their vocalist comes at you with the elemental growl of a High Priestess, vibrating with power and an electrifying aura. The riffs amplify her voice and suck you in to the band’s bloody ritual with solos that raise the hair on the back of your neck. This is some serious bangover music. If the world survives the impending apocalypse, when I get my 2025 Camaro I promise this album will be the first thing I blast in it – songs like “The Way Beyond” have a sense of unbridled adventure, and the music tells a story of sun, wind and burning rubber all the way to Hell. The title track, “Possession,” has a doomy vibe that perfectly captures the darkness of the lyrics, and the chorus has the catchiness of an anthem. In fact, this song is the new anthem for my nightmares, and now that this album has gotten under my skin, I think I’m going to enjoy them. Their 2009 demo cassette and 2010 LP, Agony & Opium, got the buzz going about them in underground metal, and put the pressure on for the follow-up, and with Possession, Christian Mistress have proven they are a force to be reckoned with. Below, stream preview tracks from Possession.
‘The Tunnels’ is the untamed, noisy, gloomy and depressed first work of this radical and vanguard noise band TERRA TENEBROSA from Stockholm, Sweden. The overall sound of the trio – a direct descendant of the widely appreciated BREACH, by the way – is based on the repetitive, monotonously clanking percussion, which makes for a aseptic industrial feel. Above that reside these weird, distorted vocal contributions, flanked by diverse down tuned stringed instruments, which grub in dissonant anti-harmonies, as well as harsh synths, that cut through the thicket of sound like bright rays of hope. All these sonic aspects merge in and with each other to form a threatening blackened mist, leaving the listener behind in a mixture of inconvenience, alienation and derangement. The metal and hardcore roots of the ensemble can only be detected as rudimentary basis elements, buried under nightmarish noise textures and wrapped in a pitch-black coat. Reminiscent in sound and aesthetics of the early work of NEUROSIS. An astounding album!
Buried deep, deep down in the tomb of decaying drone, the bones of repetitive ghostly feedback are rattling together to manifest sounds that will have you bowing at the altar of infinte bleakness. On Febuary 28th, ethereal funeral dirge sorcerers MONARCH will be releasing their new album, Omens, via At A Loss Recordings. I have been living with this album for weeks now, and I can honestly say that with every listen I’m more amazed at how this band can transform simple audio textures into complex sonic catacombs. The way that MONARCH compose music allows you to ride the tones that they put forth into other dimensions of reality. These humans build desolate soundscapes were sounds fight to be heard as individuals before they become one enity that enchants your ear cavities. MONARCH’s music is some ultra heavy shit, but at the same time their songs float my nightmares above my eternal torment. When you hear “Blood Seeress,” it will be like looking into the eyes of black magic clothed in the unseen mysteries of the underworld. MONARCH takes an extra slow dirge baseline and molds it into a foundation of audio weirdness. What’s so cool about “Blood Seeress” is not what you will experience on the surface, but the spectacular things you will encounter below the sludge. I really dig the song “Black Becomes the Sun” (killer song title) – the surreal melody that is alive in this composition is trance-like and will put you in a meditative state. The beauty and the pain in the vocalist’s voice shines fucking bright on this song. On Omens, MONARCH proves that there are many different ways to reshape what we all know as heavy music. Maybe it’s just me, but I feel that this band went into the process of creating this album with an open mind – maybe that’s why I hear creative freedom with each listen. MONARCH’s music is dark without a doubt, but it will also cast a brilliant light on your dark soul!
Sick Live Footage After The Jump!
Earth have made good on their promise of a second installment for their Angels of Darkness, Demons of Light album. The Seattle based group led by guitarist/founder Dylan Carlson released the first installment last year, and it was somewhat of a departure for the band. Carlson said he was influenced by British folk for these albums. The keyboards of Steve Moore were traded in for Lori Goldston’s cello. The songs on Angels feel far less desolate than anything found on Earth’s past two albums. Those prior compositions were dense, and filled almost with a sense of dread, as if you were lost in the desert with no water. The songs on Angels are more sparse. The instruments have room to breathe. The guitars have taken on a more clean tone, and are at times even blissful. The overall presentation of these two albums also marks a change. In the past, Earth have employed the artwork skills of Stephen O’Malley, Seldon Hunt and Arik Roper. The Angels are given a unique and colorful visual identity by artist Stacey Rozich.
The opening track “Sigil Of Brass” is a breath of fresh air. At three and a half minutes long, it’s like a nanosecond in Earth time. The song brings to mind rolling green hills and lush pastures rather than tumbleweeds and circling vultures. Goldston’s cello saws in between plucked electric guitar. Drummer Adrienne Davies is Earth’s anchor. Her steady drumming and impeccable timing holds Earth’s lengthy and repetitive songs together. It’s interesting that her percussion doesn’t make an appearance on the album until the third song, “Waltz (A Multiplicity of Doors).” The first 12 and a half minutes of this album are absent of drums, so when they finally kick in they hit hard. Goldston’s cello takes on another form in this song. You can hear the tension of the strings as her bow grinds along them. The cello goes from being an almost frantic buzz to carrying the main melody of a particular part.
The highlight of the album is the second shortest song at 8 minutes, the bass-driven “The Corascene Dog.” Karl Blau’s bass is right up front thudding away providing a solid foundation for an hauntingly beautiful guitar melody to sit atop while the cello glides mournfully in and out.
For fans of the first installment of Angels, this album goes even further with the improvised, spacious compositions. You can look forward to buying this album on Valentines this year on Southern Lord.
For all those weirdos and freaks that made it to the A389 VIII Anniversary Bash in Baltimore, damn you were lucky! CVLT Nation wants to salute Dom for putting together such an awesome event, and from what I can see, all of those who went got a chance to be a part of history. So many bands that we support at CVLT Nation killed that shit, and we want to bring you three sets that were hotter than Satan’s horns – Seven Sisters of Sleep, Full of Hell and Weekend Nachos. Fuck writing loads, but I will say that all three of these bands brought their motherfucking A-game! So after the jump and below, peep these off the chain sets…good looking out to hate5six on the filming tip!
Hey asshole, come here so I can let the power of the new Drainland /Enabler split that’s out now via Halo of Flies chew your face. This record is only 11 minutes long, but you get the fucking picture – both of these bands can bring the noise! Drainland punches you in the mouth with a fist coated in sludge nails, their new weapon of choice. Drainland are brilliant songwriters who aren’t afraid to do some weirdo shit, that’s why their songs always draw me into their bleak reality. Then Enabler are next up, and their two songs just fucking destroy everything – hear for yourself why they just got signed to Southern Lord. When you press play on “Fuck Today,” it’s like you’re sticking your head in a sonic tornado of pure electricity. This band inspires me to make it through the fucked up thing called life. Enabler will take over your aura on some metallic shit, but it’s the empathy mixed with melodic-tinged rage that will get you high! What would be a perfect night for me? A bag of good weed and watching both of these killer bands doing their thing live & direct. In the meantime, I will just keep this 7″ on repeat, and it’s your job to bring this gnarly 11 minutes into your world! This split has been certified asshole-repellent, and is meant for epic humans/aliens only!
Puff puff on that stinky green stuff that alters the way we see this ugly world. Damn, this album should have been on our top 13 list for killer albums of 2011. Montreal’s
DOPETHRONE brought doom to a new high with the release of Dark Foil. Every time I put this record on, I run for the bong. This album is the perfect soundtrack to my mental elevation! DOPETHRONE’s music has all of the right ingredients: the bones of Sabbath, the filth of crust and the whiskey breath of Motörhead. The way that this album is mixed is perfect – it’s dirty as the gutter but clear as a sunny day, and it has the sickest apocalyptic vibe throughout! DOPETHRONE’s music has a dark energy that lives within every note they play, and there is something weirdly uplifting about Dark Foil. DOPETHRONE dipped all of their baselines in the sweetest Mary Jane resin, and then cured all of their riffs for maximum death of braincells. The vocalist for this band is on some next shit, you can hear the hash oil dripping off of every fucking word that he spews. How did these Canadians get so fucking groovy? When they kick off the cover of Bill Wither’s song “Ain’t No Sunshine,” they reclaimed this classic song as their own. This is one of those bands that will have the crusty punks head banging right next to the stoners, both united under the bad sign of doom. I’m overdosing right now on DOPETHRONE’s THC-infused melody that all of the tunes are coated with. I’m not even going to tell you what song you should check out, because the whole album is heavier than 666 tons of the finest Master Kush! For those lucky enough to be headed to Roadburn this year, make sure you peep DOPETHRONE do their thing. Stop reading this review, spark a bowl and listen to some of their jams below!