After long last, we slumbering peasantry arise, back with another edition of our neglected Sleeping Village Sampler.
For those of you not in the know, this is our (regrettably infrequent) column wherein we review, in brief, two of the bands that have escaped the clutches of a full length writeup. There's a lot of underground stuff wailing incessantly from the ol' inbox, and, as this particular scribe has made a concerted effort as of late to listen to bands who don't necessarily benefit from label support, the bigger releases have kinda been getting the short end of the stick. Rather than devoting the time, then, to reviewing these two albums in full, I'll just throw out my general thoughts and we can call it a day. Sound good? Good.
TESTAMENT - Titans of Creation was released April 3rd from Nuclear Blast
I like thrash a whole lot, but here's something thrash doesn't need: another hour-long album from an undeniable legacy act. Look, Testament have cemented time and time again across their 13 studio albums that they can fuckin' rip it up in glorious fashion. Many of the tracks herein prove their prowess yet again. There are some truly vicious moments lurking throughout Titans of Creation, and I salute Testament for allowing me to indulge in some neck-snappage over the past few days. But those 5-star tracks are regrettably surrounded by some remarkably severe bloat, which ultimately drags the whole affair down. Self-editing is a must moving forward--if 25-odd minutes were sliced from this album, I would consider it a top-tier accomplishment, an inevitable contender for thrash album o' the year. As it stands, however, it shall serve as playlist fodder.
TEMPLE OF VOID - The World That Was was released March 27th from Shadow King Records
Here's a more well-known album I've been enjoying the absolute hell out of. On their latest, Temple of Void deliver a masterclass in inventively earth-shattering death doom--the uncomfortably ideal soundtrack to the apocalypse. Yet, while the heft and the monstrous swagger are obviously represented in spades, The World That Was is notably...weird. Traces of shoegaze and psychedelia weave betwixt the skull-crushing tone, and oddly experimental melodics abound. For a genre typically obsessed with burying the listener, this album feels remarkably right-footed and fresh-faced. While I don't entirely think Temple of Void have reached the pinnacle of their inventive spirit, The World That Was remains a very impressive effort. Recommended!
We provide thoughtful reviews of music that is heavy, gloomy...and loud enough to wake us from slumber. Written by a highfalutin peasantry!