Thursday, January 31, 2013


This is the debut (!!! ) album of New Zealand 4 piece Sludge/Doom band SHALLOW GRAVE (release date Feb. 4th 2013). It consists of 6 songs and has a total playing time of somewhat more than 55 minutes.

The band’s take on the genre goes slightly into an ambient, post metal direction. Slightly – that means in addition to getting crushed by relentless heavy sludge riffs, a creepy spine-chilling horror will claw at your poor soul.

The opener “Devil’s Harvest” introduces the album very well, and gives a good impression of what to expect. The last song “City of the Dead” is with a length of 15:37 minutes the longest on the album and definitely one of the highlights. My favorite is “To Unfathomable Depth” with a slow and heavy start, a lot of distortion and a killer riff, but all six songs are practically qualified for being a favorite.

Perfectly written and arranged, all songs develop an excellent dramatic zip of their own. There’s a haunting eerie undertone throughout. While the few quiet but brooding and menacing passages invoke the evil, haunting hypnotizing pounding rhythms lead you inexorably into destruction. The heavy sludge riffs and the vocals, that somehow sound like from beyond of everything, tear you into pieces.
Images of tortured souls, chaos, despair and hell itself like paintings from Hieronymous Bosch conquer your mind.

This is an entirely impressing debut album with an already distinctive style of killing heavy Sludge. I definitely recommend you check it out.

words by Ulla Roschat

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