Swift has been the rise of Allfather in the South-East England heavy music scene. Having previously released a 4 track EP ’No Gods. No Masters.' in 2015, they now return with ‘Bless The Earth With Fire’ via Portland’s Static Tension Recordings. Formed on the banks of the Medway delta in Kent, England, Allfather are a dark & brooding 5-piece who’ve been fed intravenously the likes of Eyehategod, High on Fire and drops of East coast hardcore, all to create a lethal dose of their own sludge-metal.
Adopting the slogan "Beards. Metal. Fuck You.” this record is the sound of a band refusing to be pigeon-holed into one style. Instead, fusing grooves and riffs in a way they want... whilst giving you the finger. Yet the songwriting craft manages to not only straddle the world’s of sludge, hardcore, metal and doom, but bring them together in one pissed-off and hairy package.
For a start, these guys love their riffs. There’s plenty to get your teeth into if you like guitar tones that could melt iron. Vocally, Tom Ballard’s ability across the screaming spectrum sits well on-top and adds those moments of energy and raw emotion just when required. And the production captures the heaviness of the band delivering a claustrophobic sense you're in the same room as them... ears ringing and surrounded with a stench of blood and sweat.
For me, Allfather own more menace and originality when they’re exploring the sludgy side of their personality, captured perfectly on slow-groove of ‘The Bloody Noose’ which opens with a signature lead riff setting the tone before stepping up a gear in a foot-stomping mid-section. Again, the opus that is ‘Death, And Hell Followed With Him’ is probably the highlight of the band’s career to date - an 11 minute monster which stretches the band’s sound further into more sludgy-doom territory.
If you like your NOLA-inspired sludge, you couldn’t go wrong checking out ‘Bless The Earth With Fire’. It's apparent Allfather have evolved their sound and have begun to hit their stride with this record. And it's brutal. Fuck you.
Check out the album bonus track 'Blood Red Sunset' below...
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