Endless is straight up ‘the shit’, that’s the most important fact of this review. It’s an album that has made me swoon like few others this year and it’s not exactly that metal or heavy. It is however, perfectly suited to the current climate of stoner rock and doom, bringing something quite zesty and refreshing, a fusion of fuzz, alt rock and doom rock. I’m hearing influences from Type O Negative and My Bloody Valentine, it’s super inspired and engorged with energy despite the doomy tempo. They nailed it musically and in terms of doom aesthetic – something Australia has been refining for some time now.
Despite weed being illegal here (QLD), we sure know how to do some solid stoner rock and stoner doom, here and across the the rest of the country. Obviously South Australia is a bit ahead of the curb but those cunts have a bit more of a relax than we do, what I can I say. The Brisbane strain is a bit angrier and a bit grungier.
Usurper are a volatile doom trio from Australia that often strips down to the aesthetic of a solo project, the opening of their 2018 tape Offerings is a slow build towards certain blackened doom. Something Australia does – no matter the genre – is bring a tinge of southern stoner sludge to the sound in some way. This sounds like a fetid corpse being kept alive by toxic bong vapours. To make it even better, the physical tape comes with an exclusive fourth track “Conjuration of the Four”. Well in theory it makes it better, it’s kind of an anti-track so it depends on who you are whether or not it’s a bonus.
Sumeru are a Australian and they play some serious stoner metal with a lot of variety, It can be doomy, and it can also be progressive. The music, production and presentation is top notch. This tape is quite alluring thanks to the cover art by Paolo Girardi who I covered recently for his artwork on Abominate (2019) by Firespawn. I always enjoy being able to collect cassettes from good bands who also use good artists, hell it’s practically the premise for my collection. The band’s name is probably a reference to Mount Meru which “is considered to be the center of all the physical, metaphysical and spiritual universes”.
For a new doom duo these guys go pretty hard. As their Facebook asks, “How can 2 dudes be heavier than my whole band?” and that’s pretty accurate. These doom riffs are crushing and thicc. It also features the classic Australian sound that can so easily be confused for southern or groove metal. It’s very playful and progresses through the tracks very organically. I really like the track “Flesh” – it sounds very much like a Melvins song – which I never get sick of hearing.
The vocals are clean, as per the usual with stoner doom. The influences appear to be Buzz Osborne and Ozzy Osbourne. There’s never too much of an emphasis on the vocals or the lyrics though as the mixing seems to allow any kind of germination. It all blends together nicely in a complete package. It’s not too long or too short, just a really solid debut that should be an easy listen for any doom head.
Here’s hoping they do some more physical releases (tapes please!)