Sunday, November 12, 2017
Back in June of 2015, we said of Forest of Legend's demo that they 'have the potential in them to make an incredible record. Watch this space'. Well, we write this review with big gloating grins on our faces, the guys have come through with the goods!
The three piece Virginians have taken the doom genre by the scruff of the neck and spat bile down it's throat with their self-titled debut. The vocals of Gage Shanahan are dirty and pissed off, giving the drawn out riffs an added urgency of anger and guttural desperation that builds each crushing riff into a crashing display of power, prevalant on opening track 'Lightbringer' with elements of sludge thrown into their standard heavy doom riffing. To give these guys just a 'doom' would do a disservice to their other exploratory sounds as they often trail off into psych guitar solos or power riffs that will beat your brain to mush.
As the crawling 'Cursed By Night' rains down upon you, you begin to realise that these guys mean some serious business. Often elements of Sleep and Black Sabbath are at the forefront of what they do, but the references to their peers are a tribute, not a rip off, as layers of orgasmically crushing riffing comes over you in waves, and you accept it full force. With all tracks landing between 7-8 minutes in length, it's not a record for the feint hearted. The band flitter between slightly high tempo doom ('Neptune's Glacier')and the slow-crushing stuff we all adore ('Divine Greataxe') and they feed so well into one another.
Each track is a powerhouse standout, with tracks 'Bane of the Black Lung', 'Holy Throne' and 'Brotherhood of the Black Sun' all warranting the same superlatives such as "heavy as fuck", "crushing our spines" and "riff upon riff upon riff of glorious riffs". We said these guys would make something special, and how right we were. One of the underground doom albums of the year.
Wednesday, November 1, 2017
First off, please forgive me as I have not written a review in ages so I may be a little rusty. I felt compelled to write a review of Philly-based band The Age of Truth's debut "Threshold" simply because I think it is one of the best heavy rock records I have heard all year. That is no bullshit! A perfect balance of thoughtful riffs, groove, and melody along with a precise mix lets each musician shine throughout this brilliant debut. But the thing that stands out the most is the incredibly powerful and raspy vocal of Kevin McNamara which soars over each song with a vocal reminiscent of Nick Pollock from 90's band My Sisters Machine (some of you may remember them) and early Chris Cornell, but with a more East Coast vibe, especially on the stagger-driven boogie rocker "Oceanbones" which may remind some of Clutch.
From the crushing bottom blow and crash of the cymbals of opener "Host (Demon In Me), I knew I was in for one hell of a ride. The guitar rings out with strategic echoing and flanged-out effects before feedback leads way to the punishing groove played along to the wailing vocal "I Got A Demon in Me".
The Sabbath-inspired meandering riff of "Come Back A God" will have your head-bobbing. It's grungy and filthy vibe will have you begging for more as it fades into oblivion, you get your wish, but only for a brief moment.
The shining moment on the album is the bass-driven title track "Threshold" that weaves in and out of soft staccato plucking and heavy stoner riffing until the end when it destroys you with a lumbering and penetrating rhythm, but wait, there's more as the vocals beckon "Come on..Come on..." surrounded by another tasty riff. Good heavens.
The music created by The Age of Truth is familiar, yet original. Melodic, catchy and heavy, the songs will get stuck in your head and will have you humming melodies to yourself throughout the day. And the riffs, holy shit, the riffs are non-stop. Forget about this band being labeled as Stoner Rock, they are just an awesome rock band, period. People always say to me that there are no good bands anymore, or I only like the one song from so-and-so band, well you just have to know where to look. This is The Age Of Truth!
With all the crazy shit going on in the world, there is always rock and roll to save the soul, and The Age of Truth is there to lend a hand.
The Age Of Truth is:
Kevin McNamara - Vocals
Michael DiDonato - Guitars
William Miller - Bass Guitar / Vocals
Adam Lauver - Drums
The album is released today digitally and will have a proper vinyl release on Kozmik Artifactz Records sometime early 2018.
RegR at 12:00:00 AM