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.
Cable used to be a hardcore band but they transitioned into an atmosphere fueled form of sludge in recent years. The hardcore influence can still be heard quite strongly. It reminds me a lot of Rollins Band and The Jesus Lizard in terms of writing and vocal delivery, as well as spoken word avant garde bands like Endnote or Oxbow but with softer stoner corners. It’s really fuzzy and more catchy than the tag “atmospheric” normally brings to mind.
Cold In Berlin have been playing equally atmospheric and abrasive live performances in London for almost a decade now. Starting with the essence of a post punk band and gradually absorbing the darkness of the world developing around them, dragging along with them a sense of doom. Their latest album, Rituals Of Surrender is a gothed up stoner doom album that releases on the 11th of October. I had a chance to hear the album early and very much enjoyed it, I also went back through their previous releases to find they basically started as an awesome band and stayed that way. So I’m very happy to present my interview with Cold In Berlin, an entertaining read whether you know the band or not (Just press play)
Of Blood And Wine should satiate any of my stoner and doomhead readers, it’s got everything you want from the genre and more. It doesn’t go too soft despite often threatening to. It keeps a good balance of rock to roll. The vocals are clean but there is a louder more strained vocal that carries a bit of gain. Much like Entombed’s live album Unreal Estate where they put a theatrical rock spin on many of their death metal classics. It gets quite death rock when you aren’t expecting it. Fans of Motorhead should be at home with this vintage galloping sound.
The driving force behind the music are the guitars which lay out some energetic and far reaching riffs. It’s a motivating groove that’s always tumbling like it’s filled with rocks. The drums tend to give the guitars a lot of room to shine without ever stealing focus. It feels by the numbers but no less effective as an essential part of the sound. “Erzebeth” is the highlight for me, a 12 minute epic that keeps you interested. A lot of changes occurring within the track, varying in severity from wild to subtle. There’s a cultish vibe to them akin to All Them Witches that summons images of dancing in the woods as a part of some macabre ritual.
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!)