SEA OF BONES | THE EARTH WANTS US DEAD [US SLUDGE/DRONE DOOM] REVIEWED BY LUKE HAYHURST

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US Sludge drone doomsters Sea of Bones have unleashed a brand new album with the delectable and more than likely accurate moniker of “The Earth Wants Us Dead”.

The opening tones to “The Stone, the Slave & the Architect” are quite simply put, crushing! A slow drawling ocean of devastating feedback drench riff-age, ponderous drumming and a deep throbbing bass rumble ricochet off every surface in the vicinity and all the while aggressive harsh vocals pour forth a vitriolic landslide of poison and destruction.

Using the ocean metaphor once more, “The Earth Wants Us Dead” rolls over you in waves, each one more damaging than the last. Imagine a tsunami in slow motion, a huge tidal wave of abrasive tones, monolithic riffs and grinding hostility, almost frozen in place, towering over you as the fear takes over your entire being as you know it could come crashing down on you at any point, obliterating your being in seconds, that is how this album feels to experience.

Yet there is progression and change in the wind as the more aggressive and direct approach of “Black Arm” will devoutly testify too. More a noise orientated barrage than a tsunami, this track feels relentless in its urges to decimate and destroy! As things progress and the pace increasingly decreases the heavy handed sledge hammer blow like riffs become more frequent, hammering away at what defences your senses still thinly grasp too.

In stark contrast the opening to the thirteen minute mini epic “Failure of Light” is peaceful and serene, cautious and calculating. Still, the grating tones of Sea of Bones cannot be extinguished and soon an almost cathartically paced doom laden colossus has once more reared its ugly head and laid waste to its surroundings.  Each part of Sea of Bones fits perfectly with no weak links or gaps in their quality, and as such the gigantic wall of dangerous noise they create is seamless.

“Beneath the Earth” also starts in a similarly thoughtful manner and with a calming yet cold brooding aura. That brooding aura soon becomes a raging intense fire storm of furious riffs, gripping yet raw vocal work and a melody not unlike a soaring, droning cacophony of mayhem and peril! Opening with a cosmic like curious feeling, “The Bridge” again starts methodically and diligently builds and rises as if it has all the time in the universe. When the pressure finally reaches breaking point the music explodes out in a more thoughtful, intricate way rather than catchy and flowing, similar in style to some of Cult of Luna’s work but with a darker, more razor like edge!

To finish with Sea of Bones end with the albums true epic, the title track “The Earth Wants Us Dead” played out in full and in all its forty minute long glory, it truly is a doom metal heavyweight! Take everything that the band have created thus far and multiply! A superb end, a stunning and gigantic finale, to a simply mind blowing album!

[9/10]

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