Church of Void - Winter Is Coming EPFrom: Jyväskylä, Finland. Highlights include: "Winter Is Coming"
and "Summerland". Rating: 5/5. Release Date: August 24, 2012.
The raging tempest this band puts forth in it's thunderous clamor does nothing to diminish Finland's reputation for birthing men of weather-battled burl and survivalist vigor. Church of Void washes in from the New Wave of Traditional Doom, a genre built around powerful rhythms, heavyhanded performances, blinding leads and superlative vocals versed in epic themes and structures. C of V addresses and attacks this criteria like a homeless man at a church sponsored buffet dinner. I would direct listeners to the "Strongholds of Karak Varn" to see what I mean. They have power in spades, structures and leads are in check while the vocals reach as far as they can. Vocalist Magus Corvus isn't the typical tenor vocalist one might expect fronting a band of this stripe, instead he's a bass with an animal ferocity possessed in a wheeling dervish spin of sympathetic energy through track after track. He may not be the next King Diamond, but he knows feel and he knows how to put that into the record.
|King Goat - Atom (artwork by Freyja)|
From: Brighton, England. Highlights include: "Nuclear Messiah"
and "Cosmic Mastermind". Rating: 4/5. Release Date: March 17 2013
King Goat are of the epic doom variety. Vocalist Jockum is soulful and expressive, singing with a quavering urgency that gives him the air of a mad prophet. The local doomsayer whom all shun and despise but in the end is proven right as always. The guitars are chilling and oppressive, the drums plodding but given boosts by some fine cymbal work.
Overall, 'Atom' is a well conceived EP with each song growing organically out of the previous one. There's no run on effect or anything like that, but there's a tone that wafts up on opening track, "Machine God" that spills outward into each new song, with each one expanding on and adding to the atmosphere. Tempos are typically of the 'down' to 'mid' kind, drummer Jon understanding that excitement doesn't always have to come from speed, but can also result from tension. He takes on that often thankless job and gets it just right.
The recording isn't of the best quality, which is understandable with King Goat being such a new band (and from the looks of it a young band as well), I suspect a high quality recording will bring this band's full potential to light. As it stands, 'Atom' sounds like a live recording and if it is, they already show some nice polish in terms of interplay and tightness as a unit, which is all the more impressive considering there's five of them usually all playing different rhythms. It's a promising debut, I can't wait to see what they do next. One gets the feeling that when the scaly and bloated muse visits them again their next release will be something truly epic.
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