Doomsower – Portland’s Doom Titans   Leave a comment

Oregon’s own Doom Metal titan’s Doomsower have been steadily making a name for themselves for a few years now by killer live performances with other local acts and bigger names like The Gates Of Slumber. They recently delivered a killer but all too short set of old-school Doom Metal at the Seattle Doom-Fest and have big shows lined up that are guaranteed to impress all that witness their savage metal attack. They have recorded two demos, both are very raw, especially the first one and if there was ever a band that deserves a good production job, its Doomsower as their actual songs are awesome. Their style of Doom Metal is rich in nostalgia but its in a Reverend Bizarre kind of way, they have the Sabbathian qualities that goes along with so many other bands in the genre but there is a original and unique vibe they have that is 100% Doomsower. So what about the demos……

The first one “Ov Doom” was recorded in 2008 and its raw, very raw in fact and is seriously flawed in its production values. I will get that out of the way first, the vocals are way too loud in the mix, the drums although are incredibly powerful are also too loud but its real real heavy to the point its almost indescribable. The five songs all breathe a old-school, larger than life vibe of old fashioned Heavy Pagan meets Epic Doom Metal and forget about comparing them to someone else because they take a multitude of influences and put them in a blender to create a sound that is very multi-dimensional. Its Black Metal meets Doom at times especially in the subject matter with their songs of evil but its not satanic, its too old-school for that. They plod and churn with riffs that oscillate and crawl along with a seething type of malice. Its ugly, raw doom with much variation in the tempos, its ranges from really slow to slow to mid-tempo and so they never get trapped into any one formula. Reverend Bizarre might be a reference point as might be early Cathedral but even on these early recordings, they have already captured a sound of their own.

Justin plays guitar in the mold of the other classic guitar players of the 70’s up to now, large sweeping chords give way to sinister passages of axework and at times his technique and sound is pure, crushing doom that is loud and beefy. Drummer Kalvin is different again, while Justin keeps the guitar work to a level of raw perfectionism, Kalvin is right off the charts. He plays with a bombastic style, crashing and thrashing (but slowly of course) around his kit like he is the Keith Moon of doom. While he is looser on his instrument compared with Justin, the combination is brutal and unified. The second demo is like the first, its rough and raw but one thing is instantly apparent and that is there has been a progression in the songwriting. The track “Cimmerian Sunrise” is one of the coolest doom tracks ever recorded, beginning with a riff to melt speaker systems everywhere it builds in raw intensity. The vocals this time are kept to a respectable level but what really sets this track on fire is the very sick solo work from Justin, its almost like a demented form of psychedelic jamming, moaning like a wounded animal it is harrowing to the eardrums.

The wounded animal comes back to life 10 minutes in, screeching and hollering and then the band hits a mid-tempo chugging section which is pure Doom ear-candy. This tune shows the majestic heights the band can reach and I can’t wait to hear this recorded in a decent studio, its going to blow people away. This 13 minute monster is joined by another song, this one is over 9 minutes and is the excellent “Keinen Sohn”, again it contains some sickening riffs that moan and whine. It also chugs along with a infectious but brutally heavy vibe. Both demos are great musically but the second demo shows a progression in the songwriting and the sound of a band really finding their feet. The second demo has better production even though I think it was recorded live with just one microphone. Doomsower sound like no one else in the Northwestern part of the US so they really stand out in the underground Doom scene around here and maybe in the entire country too. The fact that they are just a two piece doesn’t hurt their overall heaviness too much and if they ever add a bassist, the sound will be lethal. Personally I would like to see them enlist the services of a bass player as this will be the icing on the cake for what is already a real heavy band. Doomsower are one of my favorite US Doom Metal bands and properly the one with the greatest potential as far as demo bands are concerned.

They are still young, still a little green but with all the live experience they already have and the extraordinary batch of songs they have already recorded, their future has to be one that is going to delight and excite Doom Metal fans worldwide. Please support Doomsower, buy their demos, go to their shows, buy them a beer, let them crash at your house, great dudes, great band and one day they will conquer all. With rating these demos I am going to do a first and rate songs and production separate, why because they deserve it.
Demo One:
Songs – 8/10
Production – 3/10
Demo Two:
Songs – 9.5/10
Production – 7/10


Posted September 1, 2010 by doommantia in Doomsower

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