This Swedish trio launches their second album next month. The artwork is oddly attractive – it’s neatly hand-drawn and almost looks like the first page of a high-quality comic book. Anyway, the five tracks average over ten minutes and contain fuzzy doom/sludge interspersed with interludes.
First of all, the sound is ideal for what these guys play. The guitar is on crushing mode with the fuzz and overdrive dialed in to perfection. Every riff sounds thick and gluey, while the drums are somewhat subdued. The kickdrum is practically underproduced (if that’s even possible), and even though the cymbals and snare are lashing everything forward, they aren’t predominant.
While the production is fitting, I’m not always convinced by the compositions. I wonder why these guys need a bass player: just put an octaver on the guitarist, nobody will notice any difference. (Unbelievably, as I’m writing this, I’m hearing the first few bass notes that diverge from the guitar chords. Only half a measure, no worries!)
I do respect bands that manage to create tons of atmosphere with just one guitar. Most riffs are just that on ‘Storm’ – and the acoustic, effects-heavy passages are quite enthralling. But sometimes, I do get the feeling my patience is being tested – albums like this should come with a little weed, I guess. My musician’s ears, while highly appreciative of the guitar effects and creative simplicity, are at times disappointed with the heavier riffs; heavy but without purpose. But subtle accents, fleeting dissonances and other tricks make these tracks worthwile. One condition: you must enjoy slow, plangent, gritty sludge.
For the fans: there’s a limited series of blue vinyl (100 pieces) exclusivey available through Consouling Sounds!