CVLT NATION’S TOP 13 DOOM RELEASES OF 2018
ONE: DRUG CULT S/T
If there’s room in your life for another ethereal exponent of monolithic doom music, then Drug Cult will be happy to provide you with the necessary top-up injection. This Ritual Productions self-titled debut release introduces the Australian quartet to an audience beyond the southern hemisphere, and anyone happy to digest their doom in chunk-size bites will certainly have their appetite at least partially sated by the dark spirits that slowly unravel across these nine tracks.
TWO: WINDHAND Eternal Return
Eternal Return is their fourth album and despite the plethora of dreamy doom bands the opening track ‘Halcyon’ is unmistakably Windhand and once Dorthia’s dreamlike tones add further hazy resonance to proceedings we tumble carefree into a languid hallucinogenic portal. The droning delivery continues on the well titled ‘Grey Garden’ in which Dorthia is slightly more expressive, the hooks that little bit sharper and the drums are tested more fully. Windhand execute tension perfectly building slowly but keeping you in the dark as to what lies around the next corner. The journey though is rarely anything other than pleasurable and on ‘Grey Garden’ you almost want to get down on your knees and start planting. The reality though is that this is a typically morose affair and all the watering in the world is unlikely to result in many youthful shoots of life where Windhand are concerned.
THREE: BONGRIPPER Terminal
Chicago’s Bongripper are the doom bands’ doom band. For nearly fifteen years they’ve waged a campaign of sonic terror and aural battery that has won respect and admiration from fans and other artists alike. Their long-form, instrumental tirades are at once crushingly heavy and achingly melancholic, often wandering off into ethereal lightness. Seventh full length ‘Terminal’ is no exception.
First things first, yes, by their own lofty standards, ‘Terminal’ is relatively breezy. Weighing in at around 40 minutes, it’s removed from the epic crawls of the hour plus ‘Satan Worshipping Doom’,‘Miserable’ and ‘Hippie Killer’. But this comparable brevity serves the band incredibly well; split into the roughly equal halves of ‘Slow’ and ‘Death’, the record is a distillation of everything at whichBongripper excel, namely heaving atmospherics and incalculable numbers of riff.
Words via The Sludgelord
FOUR: HUATA Lux Initiatrix Terrae
OK Eden, you might say, but we’re four hundred words in and you haven’t even told us about the music! Well, let me put you at ease dear reader, the music is just as good as the trappings it comes in. Lux Initiatrix Terrae is a far-reaching creation of progressive doom, much like the work of the aforementioned Ancestors. Its bottomless riffs are accompanied by thick, redolent synths which weave honey-slow structures around them. Its vocals meld with plenty of backing tracks to create a certain affinity with the 70’s progressive rock approach to such vocals, all present and overwhelming.
But, most importantly of all, Huata know how to vary things up and create progressions which keep you hooked to the music unfolding around you. Take “Child of the Cosmic Mind” for example; most of the track churns along, building up tension by layering more and more ideas on top of each other. But near its end it lurches, suddenly shifting gear to allow the guitars to go even deeper into the main line of the track. By the time it bleeds into the following “The Solar Work” (perhaps my favorite track on the album), the music takes on a brooding and sinister twist which undercuts the former epic feeling of it in great ways. The bass especially plays a crucial role here, fermenting in the bottom of the mix to bring forth the other flavors in the music before the massive riffs return to crash on us, bolstered by the crawling patience of the interlude just before them.
Words via Heavy blog is Heavy
FIVE: BEASTMAKER EP’S
This year saw BEASTMAKER become one of the most prolific bands in Doom and for that we salute them!
SIX: POTION Women of the Wand
This low key release (cassette and Bandcamp only) from Aussie newcomers Potion is a trailer heavy psychedelic cocktail but don’t expect to find any multi-coloured umbrellas poking out the top. Heaviness rating is spiked sharply upwards and the grooves will send you reeling as if caught in a wind tunnel.
First track ‘Dead Mountain’ ruffles feathers from the off with the kind of painful screeched feedback sure to invoke a stampede to the doors at a convention of tinnitus sufferers. Once the roll of the drums come into view to create a solid foundation, Potion then set about unravelling a spiralling rhythmic doom carpet. Just sit back and hoover it up!
SEVEN: CLOVEN Blackened Wings
Slow, Low, Heavy, Tortured, Suffocating, Majestic, Depressing, Otherworldly… are just some of the words that come to my mind as I listen to the soon to be released record from CLOVEN entitled Blackened Wings. This band creates Death Hymns that are soaked in the monolithic blood of DOOM and will cause your whole being to be surrounded in sonic PAIN. The vocals that this band delivers act as a beacon of hope before you get buried under their downtuned quicksand! CVLT Nation is honored to be sharing with you the brand new song from CLOVEN, your new favorite Doom band that you have never heard of!
NINE: BISMUTH The slow dying of the Great Barrier Reef
Anyone who appreciates some dream state doom is going to love the new release from BISMUTH.
TEN: BONG Thought and Existence
ELEVEN: Ommadon End Times
he title of this record says it all, because that is exactly what the music sounds like – the Ending of ALL TIME! This band is so beyond heavy, they take monolithic doom to the NEXT LEVEL.
TWELVE: DOMKRAFT Flood
If you like your doom to have a cosmic vibe to it, then you should not miss out on this unreal record! It’s our honor to be premiering their trippy new visual for the title track off of their new LP.
THIRTEEN: HIPOXIA Ruinae Ira, Creans Ruina eo Tempore Est -Monumentum ab Khaos II-
Are you fucking ready to have your brain dragged through the sewer of Doom & Disgust for over 20 minutes? Hipoxia has created a record that will have fans of heavy fiending in despair.