Salutations, O Heaviest of all Bloggers! You may have noticed a slight change in the release schedule. Don’t worry, none of us got stuck in another dimension or time

2 years ago

Salutations, O Heaviest of all Bloggers! You may have noticed a slight change in the release schedule. Don’t worry, none of us got stuck in another dimension or time loop or anything like that. Heavy Blog Is Heavy is just undergoing another change in our own schedules. Doomsday will still be going strong, delivering all your fuzzy riff needs in one easily consumable package! Ya gotta mix it up every once in a while to keep things fresh and interesting. It’s good for the soul, just like drifting into your inner space on the wave of big riffs. We’ll still be here every month, so no worries!

Since we’re now switching things up, we’re also doing the whole mid-year thing on Doomsday. First, we’ll do our regular thing and bring you the heaviest releases of the month same as always. Next, we’ll discuss some great records we missed so far. We can’t cover everything all the time, and sometimes we catch things way after their initial release. So let’s make up for that! Finally, we’ll give you our favorites of the year so far. Goes along with the mid-year thing to prep us for the end of the year. Sound good? Then let’s rip it. TO THE RIFFS!

June Favorites

AssumptionHadean Tides

I feel like every month this year has brought us some absolutely filthy death doom. June was no different as Palermo, Italy’s Assumption released Hadean Tides. This record is quite the journey through the darkest period of the world. I find the record to be equally mysterious but with the violence and explosive energy to truly reflect the focus of the band’s thoughts on this record.

On top of that dark mystery, there’s a lot to love about Hadean Tides. For my doom peeps, there’s a lot of nice slow and big riffs absolutely slathered in bass and fuzz. For the death metal folks out there, there’s great classic vocals and blast beats galore. But the most intriguing moments are the interludes. On their Bandcamp page, the band points to the poetry of William Butler Yeats, Dylan Thomas, and others that informed the track “Triptych”, and they also point to a time in the history of the earth of great upheaval shrouded in the distant past. It all makes for an original performance of a record. I couldn’t recommend it enough for a death doom fix.

-Pete Williams

Magnatar Crushed

Principal amongst those often imitated but never replicated bands in my head is Neurosis. For me, it’s always interesting to find groups who are so “brazen” to include such legends in their Bandcamp album descriptions, but these fellas from New Hampshire earned a coveted lifetime pass from this writer. It may sound hyperbolic, but Magnatar isn’t coughing up a “yeah, but…” or pharmaceutical generic of Neurosis or YOB on Crushed, this is bonafide soul-leveling post-y sludge of the highest order. Magnatar expertly toe the line between liquifying your skull meat with crippling volume and recombobulating it with some artsier, brainier methods. But that’s not all, there’s a tinge of stoner doom and noise rock lurking in the shadows of this gargantuan sludge, too.

Like always, the details and little things help it come together. There’s that minimalist tension that breaks way to some …crushing… shit in “Crown of Thorns,” while tracks like “Personal Contamination Through Mutual Unconsciousness” and “Dragged Across the Surface of the Sun” hit hard with obtuse and cumbersome riffage, belabored drumming, and melty vocals that can still set the hook. There’s an intrepid layer to their songwriting, too. The rangy “Loving You Was Killing Me” conjures a trippy and introspective post-rock character and meshes it with interesting samples and progressive songwriting, while closer “Event Horizon” goes all out with a totally maximalist approach, a song that might be literally too heavy. I can’t boost this record enough, it’s a glove-like fit for all you heady cave dwellers.

Jordan Jerabek

Things We Missed

AlunahStrange Machine

I can’t think of a better way to summarize this record than when Alunah vocalist Siân Greenaway belts out, “Ascend into the stratosphere.” This is uptempo psychedelic doom like you rarely hear now. Strange Machine is the perfect encapsulation of stoner metal to me as it makes you feel like you’re blasting through an intergalactic highway on the power of music. A ridiculous statement, I know, but listen to Strange Machine once or twice and you’ll know how accurate the metaphor is. On top of all that, this is just a fun as hell record that will kick your ass in gear. I can’t think of a better descriptor, and I’m sorry I missed this when it first came out. But I’m here now banging the drum for Alunah, and I think that’s what really matters.


Mammoth Weed Wizard Bastard The Harvest

I’m almost embarrassed about not writing this one up. Mammoth Weed Wizard Bastard creates music that is all the hallmarks of what I personally love, and The Harvest may be the best example of what the band does so far. This is an incredibly spacey version of stoner doom, starting you up with a spooky track of atmospheric synths and radio frequency vocals before absolutely slamming into the title track. The music is also denser than a dying sun. You really need multiple playthroughs to make sure you’re hearing everything The Harvest has to offer. The little synth frills behind humongous riffs and cavernous bass lines seal the deal for me. It all makes you want to hit the repeat button and go through it again. Get on it ASAP.


Cloakroom Dissolution Wave

I don’t think it gets any better than this for heavy gaze in 2022. Cloakroom pick up a bit on the poppier end of that dreamy alt rock thing Nothing have been owning lately, shifting their gossamer and foggy atmospheres to some astoundingly spacey and curiously catchy places. There’s the kind of variety that only really comes about as a result of snapshot-perfect songwriting – each track plays its role and does it so, so well. Dissolution Wave’s sequence and concept mesh exceptionally, playing like a classic rock record delivered from the farthest reaches of the cosmos. The almost alt-country twang, the textural details, the tone, temperament, and candor, fuck, everything comes together in this really singular and perfect way, right down to the uber-satisfying climax/get-ready-to-cue-this-sucker-up-again moment of closer “Dissembler.”


Isaurian Deep Sleep Metaphysics

Isaurian’s 2020 release Chains of Blue scratched an itch I didn’t realize I had. The coalescence of goth-tinged, post-y doomgaze came to life in such a spectacular way in their hands. Dismal, ethereal, and no less powerful, this Brazilian group really seemed to find themselves in that record, too, like an artistic vision fully realized. As a follow-up, Deep Sleep Metaphysics takes this signature sound to another level. The arrangements this time are more intricate and dynamic, but also stylistically more rangy, too. Their post- stuff really shines here, “Hearts and Roads” and “Autumn Eyes” feel incredibly refined, but tracks like the almost-grungy “For Hypnos” and the ambient “The Dream to End All Dreams” lend some interesting shape and variety. Still, it’s the opener “Árida” that steals the show with a soul-bearing opening vocal that is amongst my favorite musical moments of the year. Deep Sleep Metaphysics goes right to the top of the heap for pretty, gloomy, heavy stuff.


CavernlightAs I Cast Ruin Upon the Lens That Reveals My Every Flaw

I don’t know of many albums as soul-sapping as Cavernlight’s latest. As I Cast Ruin Upon the Lens That Reveals My Every Flaw is a supremely dark, emotional, and stark record; heavy in every sense of the word and precisely the kind of cathartic experience many sludge and doom fans are seeking. The elements here feel quite refined: the samples, piano, noise flourishes, use of spoken word, and electronics are used to great effect, feeling vital at every moment but never overdone. To that point, this is a considerably more focused effort than their previous; urgent, haunting, and maniacal rather than overwhelming and suffocating. This just feels right for this record, and ultimately, this approach makes Cavernlight nothing short of arresting in each of these eight tracks, crystallizing many facets of mental illness both sonically and poetically. There are dark records, there are heavy records, and then there’s As I Cast Ruin Upon the Lens That Reveals My Every Flaw. It’s in a class of its own.


Our Midyear Favorites

Pete’s Incandescent and Majestic Top 10

  1. Wo FatThe Singularity
  2. Mizmor & ThouMyopia
  3. Red EyeThe Cycle
  4. HumanotoneA Flourishing Fall in a Grain of Sand
  5. MessaClose
  6. Path of MightDeep Chrome
  7. Absent in Body Plague God
  8. Tzompantli Tlazcaltilitzli
  9. KonventCall Down the Sun
  10. Mammoth Weed Wizard Bastard The Harvest

Jordan’s Thunderous and Cascading Top 10

  1. CloakroomDissolution Wave
  2. CavernlightAs I Cast Ruin…
  3. Mares of ThraceThe Exile
  4. PyritheMonuments to Impermanence
  5. Dungeon WeedThe Eye of the Icosahedron
  6. Mizmor & ThouMyopia
  7. MagnatarCrushed
  8. IsaurianDeep Sleep Metaphysics
  9. TuskarMatriarch
  10. TzompantliTlazcaltiliztli

Eden’s Cavernous and Echoing Top 10

  1. Humantonoe A Flourishing Fall in a Grain of Sand
  2. Path of MightDeep Chrome
  3. Famyne II: The Ground Below
  4. Messa Close
  5. Pyrithe Monuments to Impermanence
  6. Towers of JupiterIII
  7. Besvärjelsen Atlas
  8. Red EyeThe Cycle
  9. Epitaphe II
  10. Eight BellsLegacy of Ruin
Pete Williams

Published 2 years ago