Tag Archives: Doom Metal

King Goat – Debt Of Aeons

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As the saying goes: everything comes in threes. Today marks the third review of a band’s third release, in a row, and I could not be happier to end this hat-trick with a genre I only dabble in very rarely: doom metal! Ever since giving them a go four years ago, King Goat have managed to tickle my fancy for the genre, and since their new full-length Debt Of Aeons is just around the corner, it seems only fitting for me to take an early look at it and try to whet your appetite!

I’ll just be upfront: I already held high praise for the quintet’s previous record, because it was a serious step up from its predecessor, but I will have to add some more of it, since they managed to outdo themselves in virtually every aspect. The six songs, seven if you count the interlude, still have that sense of grandeur and all-enveloping atmosphere about them, but they also come with a new layer of je ne sais quoi. I want to say that it’s an even better understanding of songwriting than previously, but it could also stem from the incredibly well-done mixing.

The afore-mentioned improved songwriting is clearly palpable in the way the songs are structured: away with entire songs being devoted to one direction, be it calm or heavy, and welcome to, on average, eight minute epics that take you a journey through time. The album also packs the shortest song the band has written to date, which at the same time marks their first instrumental track, and it shows quite nicely that they can definitely build up tension without spending close to ten minutes on it.

While these forty-eight minutes, without a doubt, hold my favorite riffs of KG thus far and the drums have also gotten a much more prominent role in the band’s soundscape, it is still the singer that hammers home how much potential these guys hold in their grasp, to make it big. I’ve raved about him in the past but I can only repeat myself: the range this man has, just blows me away and I even feel like it has expanded just a tad bit further this time around. There is a scream on the title track that gives me the chills every time I hear it…truly good stuff!

There’s not much more to say other than what I said last time: this is how you advance as a band, by bettering every aspect as much as you possibly can and never giving up. Honestly, if you are even the slightest into metal and want to support a bunch of talented musicians, do yourself a favor and listen to Debt Of Aeons when it’s released this Friday, April 20th, and let King Goat take you on a little trip! For more information you can visit the band’s Facebook page and check out the lyric video below!
[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tVO2chSz3bs]

King Goat – Conduit

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One of the biggest surprises in 2014 for me was a relatively new band from Brighton, that played a genre that I was never really familiar with, and still can’t claim to be, who simply blew me away with its atmospheric doom metal. The band in question is called King Goat and the quintet is about the release their first full-length entitled Conduit on March 25th, so naturally I’ll give you my two cents on it beforehand!

Essentially, the guys have stayed true to their genre but the two years in between the self-titled EP and this have definitely managed to make the creative juices flow in abundance. Everything sounds more mature and elaborate, and especially the riffs deliver a sense of grandeur that aid in creating a dense atmosphere throughout the forty-two minutes that can’t even be compared to the predecessor.

The one thing that is similar to the previous effort, is the build-up phase during the first two songs before exploding on the third one and maintaining it on the last two. While track one, Flight Of The Deviants, and two, Feral King, are sung completely in clean vocals and have a somewhat heavy-metalesque touch, the title track goes into overdrive with a crushing main riff and growls and screams left, right and center. It is about here where I get the chills while listening to these five tracks…and they don’t disappear until the end.

The fact that this middle track also features additional (female) vocals during the “chorus” just makes it even tastier in my opinion, because it creates even more depth. Not that the singer needs it, because he definitely shines on his own at every moment of the listening experience. Every line, no matter the singing style, hits just where it’s supposed to hit and combined with the fairly epic lyrics, it might not be the sing-along record of the year, but it’s absolutely a blast to enjoy.

To sum things up: THIS is how you make a follow-up to an EP that has received wide praise. You keep the good, you improve the not so good, and you put your heart and soul into it! Conduit does all that and then some…so be sure to head over to King Goat‘s Facebook page and listen to the song below, even though it should ideally be enjoyed along with the rest of the record, to get your metalhorns ready for the release tour in the UK!
[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mHBrg2flF8A]

Plaguewielder – Chambers Of Death

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Even though the metal scene in Luxembourg is a presence that cannot be underestimated these days, there are some genres that are very scarcely represented. Doom metal is certainly one of them because, unless I am mistaken, there is only a single band that chose to invest their talent in it. That formation is called Plaguewielder and the guys are about to release their first album, which goes by the name Chambers Of Death.

Now, if you look at the amount of tracks, you could assume that it’s just an EP, but I must remind you that it’s doom metal we’re talking about here: forty-nine minutes of music await you! I have to add that three out of the five tracks are new versions of the songs that were on their debut EP, but since we haven’t gotten around to reviewing that on here in the past, it was a wholly fresh experience for me. Due to the low amount of songs, I’m going to do something I rarely do, but which I think is justified in this case: a song by song breakdown.

Existence Is Our Exile starts off with black metalesque screams of pure desperation, present on the entire record, before kicking it off with a powerful outburst which follows that same emotion. The soundscape is enriched by minor use of string instruments which fit the mood perfectly and give the song that extra something. About halfway through, the synthesized piano kicks in and, without really breaking the feeling of despair, drives the song into a completely different direction before reverting back to the main part to close the song.

The second song, Drowned, which remains largely unchanged from its former glory except for a handful of added vocals, is the slowest song on the album and the most basic one out of the bunch. While it’s nowhere near anything I would consider bad, it doesn’t have any of those surprise moments which I love so much on the other tracks.

The new version of Casket Of Dying Flesh follows, which takes a while to build up an atmosphere before the organ kicks in. Baring in mind that I hadn’t given the EP a listen before, this really took me by surprise since it fits so nicely into the concept of the song that I couldn’t imagine it without it. The melody of the organ just has this looney bin feel to it, which complements the lyrics so well…in case you’ve read them.

I’ll be straight-forward here: Father Suicide, the second new song, is by far my favorite on the album. The first half of the song is an almost post-rock-worthy barrage of fast-paced riffing and drumming, which conveys, to me at least, this feeling of total freedom but yet of deep sadness. The synthesized piano is the omnipresent instrument throughout the seven minutes and helps guide the song into its heavier part in the second half, which is on the heavier spectrum of the band’s sound.

The closing track, The Funeral March, is the longest song and at the same time a perfect way to close the Chambers Of Death. Its gloomy vibe is carried all throughout the almost fourteen minutes and even when the song picks up the pace, the depressing mood is not lifted, quite the contrary: it has this goosebump-inducing quality to it until the very last seconds.

That’s about it. Plaguewielder is a very promising band with loads of potential to be quite prominent in the scene, and definitely not simply because they are the only ones in their musical field. While I think it would have been welcomed by their fans if there had been more new material, I think the guys did the right thing by spicing up their old material, since it sounds so much more powerful now. Generally speaking, the production is just what it should be: clean but not artificial sounding in any way whatsoever. Be sure to visit the band’s Facebook page and do yourself a favor by giving Chambers Of Death a listen when it drops on August 25th and get sucked into (your) doom!

[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Edi1eYhUhaI]

King Goat – King Goat EP

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Before I start today’s review, I should probably say that I am by no means a big doom metal connoisseur, I have had a few minor encounters when I was still looking for the direction I wanted to take and that’s about it. So please excuse the lack of comparisons that the aficionados among you might be able to find. Anyways! Brighton-based King Goat are on the menu today, with their self-titled EP!

Released in December 2013, the three-track record is actually quite diverse despite the low amount of songs: a multitude of riffs in each song, under-laid with drums that don’t try to stand out too much and rather deliver a great a supporting performance keep the listener from getting bored anytime soon.

Although there’s only three songs, the total playtime comes to about twenty-seven minutes. That length is mostly due to the thirteen minute opener, The Final Decline, which spends about two-thirds of its time in building up momentum step by step before erupting in doomy glory. I do have to say that the build-up is a bit too long for my taste, but I get what the quintet is aiming for, so I tip my hat to them.

While the production is really tight and clean, it doesn’t overdo it…thus achieving a warm and fitting sound. But my personal highlight is definitely the vocalist, who has a plethora of different singing styles in his repertoire and is, in my opinion, the main driving force on the EP. Especially his clean vocals reminded me in some parts of Ozzy in his glory days…free goosebumps included.

All in all, the blokes did everything right and I can heartily recommend giving them a listen…especially since you can legally download their stuff for free below! For more info, go to their Facebook page and if you are in the general vicinity of Brighton…go check ’em out live!