CaronteThis is Italy’s answer to the likes of Electric Wizard, Reverend Bizarre and with some vocals that sound sometimes like Danzig. Essentially this is tripped out, heavy as hell doom. Even after the first listen, this is an awesome release. The guitar tone is probably my favourite for the genre and following their ‘Ascension’ release from a couple of years back, it’s clear that the quality and variation is Caronte’s major driving force as there has definitely been some forward movement since their last effort and leaps and bounds since their ‘Ghost Owl’ release.

‘Wakan Tanka Riders’ has a touch of Hawkwind inspired space rock in the background whilst ‘Temple of Eagles’ really hits the Reverend Bizarre doom ridden tales of woe. The character emanated via these two similar but different tones and song structures really feel dominating, precise and certainly lives up to the esoteric trip that the PR material speaks of.

‘The Sulphur Shaman’ is the nastiest and heaviest vocal-wise for this album, often reminding me of early Unearthly Trance and those Southern Lord releases from around the millennium, extreme and definitely heavy. The vocals do revert back to their normal haunting style later on during the track. By the time you are here in this album, you are truly smitten, there is not going back now.

This is quite an infectious easy album to listen too. There are so many times you can take a touch of purpose but at the same time exhume tranquillity and relaxation, I am really loving this. Ok, musically it’s not the fastest out of the blocks and technicality is not a major feature, but this just works. The arrangements keep you drained with pleasure from every guitar trill, tripped out fuzzbox reincarnation and lamenting cry of emotion from this heavy acid inspired doom metal, this is great!

(9/10 Paul Maddison)