|Cover artwork by Dave Quiggle.|
After 15 years of swinging axes and splitting skulls, it's safe to say that The Gates of Slumber are a veteran, capable band. This maturity is obvious from the first minute of opening track "Death March" (see video below). They are a band in complete control of their compositions, where 'The Wretch' saw a band exploring longer compositions concentrating in some parts on low end atmospherics and prolonged mood swings, 'Stormcrow' boils their essence down to five digestible songs without having to sacrifice atmosphere.
This band knows their stuff. 'Stormcrow' is an (abridged) encyclopedia of riffs, a (short) blue book for doom mechanics. Beserker adrenaline rushes are followed by bone-tired battle-weariness in an endless cycle of survivalism. All five tracks here are full up with seething, sneering riffs, leering, slithering basslines and powerhouse drumming. The drumming may be the difference here as 'Stormcrow' hails the return of 'Iron' Bob Fouts to the fold after a couple years' absence. There was nothing wrong with J. Clyde Paradis' drumming on 'The Wretch', but one gets the feeling that Karl Simon and Jason McCash were energized by the return of Fouts and the completion of the band's classic lineup.
Welcome to air guitar city, 'Stormcrow' is infused with energy and action, keeping the more pronounced somber moods of 'The Wretch' to the realm of post-battle reflection. I would recommend this EP to metalheads who don't ordinarily go for Doom but are Doom-curious.
Highlights include: "Son of Hades" and "Death March"
1). Death March (5:50)
2). [Devil's Grip] - Driven Insane (5:36)
3). Son of Hades (6:12)
4). Dragon Caravan (5:06)
5). Of That Which Can Never Be (7:56)
Total Run Time: 30:38
Karl Simon (Guitars, Vocals)
Jason McCash (Bass)
'Iron' Bob Fouts (Drums)
From: Indianapolis, Indiana
Reminds me of: Corrosion of Conformity, Egypt, Saint Vitus
Release Date: January 29, 2013
Suggested listening activity for fellow non-stoners: Cross the time-worn raider infested canyon with battleaxe in hand, taking heads.
Dr. Doom's Lair
Temple of Perdition
Perkele in Italian
Crows n Bones interview
Gates of Slumber official website
Gates of Slumber on facebook
The EP itself has its own facebook page ... no joke.
GET IT HERE