If you think about it, nearly every instrumental metal band out there has some sort of progressive tendency to them. Off the top of my head, I can think of the following bands: Animals As Leaders, Pomegranate Tiger, Scale the Summit, Russian Circles—and none of them can really be considered to be much else than standard prog.
Not that progressive metal is bad, of course—I’ve heavily enjoyed Animals As Leaders and Scale the Summit over the years—but one would think that there’d be more genres musicians could cover with simply instrumentals. Obviously there are some exceptions, like Bongripper, or sludge metal rookies The Lumberjack Feedback, but the these exceptions are few and far. However, today I’m here to talk to you about an absolutely killer band who does some great instrumental sludge music.
Fossils are a Denmark-based duo that does instrumental sludge in a new way—that is, without the use of guitars. The band’s members—Simon Tornby and Per Silkjaer—only play bass and drums, respectively. Although their latest EP, The Meating, utilizes vocals, their two albums The Meat Rush and Flesh Hammer do not; instead, they fill the track with some of the most pummeling, earth-shaking, head-snapping riffs and pounding drums ever recorded. Each song the track plays is short and sweet—usually around two minutes—but doesn’t forget to groove like you wouldn’t believe.
And let’s not forget the production. The things that attracted to me to Fossils, and, in particular, their second album Flesh Hammer was the crunchy, roaring sound Simon Tornby uses on his bass. It reminds me of, if you can believe it, a more crispy-sounding Black Breath, with the mids intensely scooped out. In a way, it sounds like the opposite of what Josh Homme did on Kyuss’s Blues For The Red Sun, as if Tornby was playing his bass through a guitar amp.
So, if you’re looking for instrumentals with a little less prog and a lot more muscle, check out Fossils. You won’t regret it.