Morass of Molasses – These Paths We Tread

The first album from UK trio Morass of Molasses has definitely been one encounter we have here been keenly anticipating, almost from the day the band first stepped forward with a couple of senses infesting, psyche twisting tracks. Their fusion of doom, sludge, and stoner bred textures served in a swamp of aural filth just fed all the instincts and continued to through their debut EP a few months after. Now we have These Paths We Tread to devour, an album which we will admit had us a touch unsure initially.

Instantly enjoyable, These Paths We Tread still had thoughts crowding to contemplate its new proposal of sound. Morass Of Molasses has lured their music from the filth infested depths of the swamp into a cleaner yet still aurally clinging landscape. That is not to say that it does not still come with a healthy coating of scuzz and doom lined dirt but it is a lumbering trespass of sound which is almost more celebratory than predatory. Quite simply their sound has matured, grown up even, and hindsight through listening back at certainly that last EP, So Flows Our Fate, shows it was an evolution on the cards even back then. To be honest we miss the filth but it has not stopped These Paths We Tread through time and listens blossoming into one seriously striking encounter loaded with the potential of even greater adventures ahead with the threesome of vocalist/baritone guitarist Bones ‘The Beard’ Huse, lead guitarist Phil ‘The Mountain’ Williams, and drummer Chris ‘The Beast’ West.

These Paths We Tread gets off to a mighty start with My Leviathan, its gentle caresses of melody and atmospheric waves a deceptive coaxing into the waiting jaws of colossal riffs and flirtatiously tangy grooves. Settling into a predacious crawl entwining raw causticity with salacious seduction, the song roams ears and imagination like a primal siren. Bones’ raw throaty roars share pure toxicity at times, his hostile tones matched by the punchy rhythms of West but tempered by his own calmer vocal tempting and the sonic web cast by Williams. Continually twisting through an array of perpetual incitement on ears and appetite, the track is glorious, its emerging funkiness icing on the feral cake.

Recent times has seen MOM tear into stages alongside the likes of Orange Goblin, Ohhms, Vodun, Elephant Tree, Desert Storm, Space Witch, Sea Bastard, Gurt, and Limb among many others, and there are essences of a few of these within second track So They Walk. Its grooves seep Orange Goblin/Kyuss like taunting whilst its irritable side has a Sleep like causticity, all merged into a distinct MOM recipe and a track like its predecessor which hits the spot with relish.

Continuing themes of “mythic sin and ancient archetypes”, album and next up Serpentine lyrically and musically bind the listener in evocative textures. The third track winds around ears with a dexterity and sonic adeptness emulating its title, grooves almost slithering across the imagination as rhythms bite. Bones’ warm if emotionally deceitful vocals contrast the underlying volatility of the track superbly, also erupting at times to spark a sonic wave fuelling greater weight and intensity throughout. It is a bewitching affair, not as instantly gripping as the first pair of songs but blossoming with every listen into an instinctive temptation before the brief incantation of The Ritual lures and the haunting presence of Centralia descends. A weave of stoner bred enterprise lined with provocative shadows and ghostly whispers as infectious rhythms drive a rolling canter, the second of the two is a well of suggestion coloured by the skilful adventure of Williams on guitar strings.

Next up Maenads is a psychosis of drama and sound, simultaneously enthralling and threatening with seduction and primal toning. It is fair to say, as the album, the track grows and infests deeper into the psyche with every taking of its inflamed intoxication; its melodic anaesthetic fascinating and feral instincts tantalising before things end with Wrath Of Aphrodite, a song which maybe did not quite spark the passions as richly as its companions yet has body and appetite for more bouncing to its groove woven, heavily boned rock ‘n’ roll.

Certainly for fans of the band, These Paths We Tread  will maybe need time to grow and develop on ears and thoughts though newcomers will find Morass of Molasses a quick persuasion we are sure. Yes we still miss the filth but the album blossoms into something thickly compelling and increasingly pleasurable; how stupid of us to doubt with those first thoughts.

These Paths We Tread is out now through HeviSike Records in various formats @ https://morassofmolasses.bandcamp.com and http://www.hevisike.com/product/morass-of-molasseslp

https://www.facebook.com/MorassOfMolasses

Pete RingMaster 24/05/2017

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Groan – Ride The Snake EP

© Oran Tarjan

© Oran Tarjan

Like being thrust into a predatory mosh pit of agitated woolly mammoths, the Ride The Snake EP from one of the UK’s most exhausting and inventive sculptors of heavy duty riffs and contagion clad rhythms wrapped in funk kissed intrusive grooves continues the towering presence of a titan of consumptive intensity. Groan are no strangers to acclaim and it is hard to expect anything but another fever of praise and strong reactions for their latest towering five track bruising. Merging stoner and doom metal with hard rock and classic metal, plus plenty more essences, Groan has never been lightweight in crafting rapacious provocation but it is fair to say that their new release has an extra growl to its rampage which ignites even further hunger for the band’s incendiary sound.

2010 saw Groan’s debut album The Sleeping Wizard uncaged and it had little difficulty in garnering eager responses and acclaim from fans and media alike. Equally drawing hungry responses for their live shows the band next recorded a split EP with Finnish band Vinnum Sabatum in 2011, it another record swamped by critical plaudits as was second album The Divine Right of Kings which was unleashed in October of last year. Now with a new line-up seeing band founders vocalist Mazzereth and bassist Leigh Jones joined by guitarists Mike Pilat (ex-Ocean Collective) and James Beedham, as well as drummer Zel Kaute (ex- Pettybone, Vodun), Groan thrust forward the Ride The Snake EP to attack and ravage the senses, something the Superhot Records released record does with riveting exhaustive ease.

Women Of Doom opens up the torrent of sound; ridiculously gripping acidic grooves winding their way around the chugging RideTheSnakeCoverthroaty bass prowl and slugging rhythms, all immediately capturing attention before moving on to the imagination as their persistence seduces with every chord. The great slightly rasping vocals of Mazzereth almost scold the ear, his delivery a squalling passion which matches the heat of the song’s energy and the melodic causticity coating every note. From the lumbering yet energetic start the track lifts its heavy metal knees into an eager romp, entwining both lilts across the remainder of its magnetic heavyweight bulk.

The impressive start is soon left in the wake of Drug Lord, the track a massive peak upon the release. Group shouts triggers the entrance of the track, their call enticing predatory riffs and barracking rhythms to bring their intensive pressure and air to the already tempting bait. There is always a swagger to the band’s creativity and songs, the second on the EP employing one of their most contagious yet, the song swinging with muscular hips whilst sonic endeavour and anthem bred vocals seduce the listener further. It is a delicious riot of dirty rock ‘n’ roll soaked in raucous blues and stoner toxicity, a song hard not to just have just one more rampage with before moving on.

Both Slice of That Vibe and Blessed Is My Blade feed on the black ‘n’ blue emerging upon the senses caused through their predecessors with individual but mutual creative rabidity. The first fuses a punk ‘n’ roll essence reminding of Fuckshovel to a Maiden kissed metallic predation. It does not quite find the same submissive rapture as the first two tracks but with guitar invention which has lips licked furiously it is still a formidable and irresistible blaze soon matched by its successor. The second of the two hits a classic/hard rock vein to exploit, rhythms taking chunks out of the senses whilst the guitars send sonic spirals across their bows with enterprise and seductive skill.  Infusing additional haunted temptation and a breath stealing chugging charge as well as a bordering speed metal infection, the track is an absorbing stoner rock hybrid of the highest order.

The eight minute plus stroll of Citadel of Chaos brings the EP to a close. It offers a reserved gait which increases pace and intensity as it expands and an insatiable seduction within its expressive and sonically scenic path. Though the earlier tracks still take top honours the closer shows everything you need to know about Groan to place them on the frontline of British stoner and riff driven metal.  With the likes of Desert Storm, Ten Foot Wizard, and XII Boar to name just three of the great imposing current and emerging bands, the UK scene has the staggering armoury to take on the heavyweights of the world with Groan again proving they are driving the frontline.

https://www.facebook.com/groanuk

9/10

RingMaster 09/12/2013

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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