Thursday, February 21, 2019

Bandcamp Picks - Dead Witches, Ohhms, Endless Floods, Norilsk

Electric Wizard don't have the cachet they did 10 years ago, but there's still a fair amount of hype surrounding Dead Witches (which contains original Wizard drummer Mark Greening). With Oliver Hill of DoC faves Sea Bastard on guitar, there's no doubting the heaviness of The Final Exorcism, which takes the Wizard's true doom fealty to rumbling new lows. The only sore point is new vocalist Soozi Chameleone, whose limited range and off-key wailing often grate - although Ozzy carved out a half-century career with those same qualities, so there's no reason why that should hold Dead Witches back. [€7.99]

OHHMS have carved out a sizable following with a series of releases that mine the once fertile Isis/Hydrahead terrain. Exist, their fourth album, ups the prog complexity of early Mastodon, keeping the listener off-balance with constant tempo changes and stylistic shifts - and that's just the album's monster 22 minute opener. Not a band who makes things easy - either for themselves or the audience. [£7.99 GBP]

If doom metal as a genre seems content to reprise the first four Black Sabbath albums ad infinitum, then Bordeaux trio Endless Floods may come as a relief. Completely eschewing blues riffs and classical scales, Circle The Gold drops dissonant chords like cinder blocks, occasionally easing the distortion but never the weirdness. The baton that Harvey Milk drunkenly tossed aside has been claimed. [€6]

Saskatoon-based duo Norilsk hit a lot of different flavours of slow + heavy on their epic, somewhat meandering third album. Weepers of the Land tries its hand at groovy riffs and grandiose melodies, but is at its best when it strips everything down to a forlorn minimalism. Here's hoping the band zeroes in on those impulses on future albums. The album is available as a "name your price" download.