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Saturday, February 9, 2013

EP Review: MOGHUL



Moghul hail from the very birth place of heavy metal itself, the bleak city of Birmingham that lies in the dark hearted center of the UK. 

This 4 piece consists of James Neuenhaus on vocals and guitar, Joseph Barber on vocals and guitar, Adam Wiseman on Bass and Tom Woods on vocals and drums. Having formed as recently as 2012, Moghul have quickly made a name for themselves playing on the same bill as more established bands such as Conan, Alunah, and Slab to name just a few.

This EP is their first offering with 2 tracks, Dead Empires and Hidden Hand and with its cover a black and white shot of an ancient cairn (I'm sure I know that particular stack of stones) and Hebrew lettering, you just know your in for some down tuned sonic goodness of the esoteric kind.
Both are deliciously heavy slices of sludgy and unmistakably British doom metal very much in the vein of Conan.

Track 1, Dead Empires begins with some simple opening heavy riffage and within a short time the heaviness is amped up by a second guitar adding weight and depth to the already thick sound. A soaring guitar lick adds a slaying and melancholic aire to their vibe before the vocals come with a loud call to the ancient gods of the riff, summoning even more heaviness. The track grinds on, low end seeping everywhere while another vocalist breaks up the chant with a growling incantation. The drums pound the earth causing sonic earthquakes that drive the track along at a steady and hypnotic pace, sending ripples throughout space.

Track 2, Hidden Hand starts off less heavy than its predecessor with its atmospheric and soft bass line, drifting melodic guitar tones and simple percussion building a maudlin and serious sound until the 1 minute 37 seconds mark when the track drops a thousand ton weight of low end sludge upon the listener. This is the stronger of the 2 tracks on this EP but it is just as hypnotic and crushing as the first, conjuring images of ancient druids stood on mountain tops shouting forbidden words at a blackening sky. The slow and plodding pace does not cause the track to feel too long and drawn out, broken up as it is by calmer moments, taking quick breaths before the sludge comes falling down again, increasing the heaviness with the weight of the universe behind it. The drums complement it all nicely, not being too complicated or all over the place, just nice and simple pounding rhythms that support the crushing low end frequencies.

This EP is a strong first effort from this British 4 piece and I predict good things to come for them if they push their sound forward. This is a band I would love to hear live as the sheer weight of their sound is enough to rattle anyones rib cage; a very pleasant sensation I'm sure you will agree.

The EP is now available from Devizes Records as a limited edition green vinyl pressing of only 80 copies or black vinyl with 110 copies here: www.ds.bigcartel.com

The EP can be downloaded in digital from the Moghul bandcamp at: http://moghul.bandcamp.com/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Moghuluk

3 comments :

  1. I dig it, AL! You write with an excellent marriage of the technical and the visual. A writer who puts an image in my mind is a writer I'll go back to! Nice work!

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  2. Well said good sir. Hidden Hand is impressive, I will certainly keep Moghul on the radar for future releases.

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  3. Cheers guys. I enjoyed reviewing this one. Definitely a band to watch for in the future.

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