Saturday, 10 December 2016

REVIEW: Ten Ton Slug - "Brutal Gluttonous Beast" (EP)

By: Jake Wallace

Album Type: EP
Date Released: 25/10/2016
Label: Independent


'Brutal Gluttonous Beast' is an unbelievably solid debut EP from Ten Ton Slug. Absolutely crammed with riffs and the stories behind the songs combined with the imagery of the beast provide a superb visual accompaniment to their auditory devastation. Extremely promising beginning for a band that are deeply rooted in the sludge/groove metal genre and can deliver the goods with devastating power and magnitude.


“Brutal Gluttonous Beast” CD//DD track listing:

1). Trollhunter
2). Bloodburns
3). Subterranean
4). Unit

The Review:  

Ten Ton Slug are a 5-piece sludge/groove metal band based in Galway, Ireland. With one of the finest band names around, these lads provides some mind-numbing music that totally lives up to their image. Their debut EP 'Brutal Gluttonous Beast' was released on October 25th and the 4-track record is thoroughly crushing. With gig dates coming up in Dublin, Germany and the UK in 2017, you might just be lucky enough to bear witness to it. The Slug is hungry. The Slug shows no mercy. 

 'Trolhunter' is the first track on the EP and the onslaught begins viciously. A dual-guitar riff machine courtesy of Sean Sullivan and Adomas Trakumas provides an extremely dense wall of sound. The vocal work of Ronan O 'hArrachtain is ideal for this style of music and his range between deep growls and piercing screams is hugely extensive. This calibre of metal featuring on a debut EP is extraordinary and from the get-go it sounds as if these guys have been slugging (ha) away for years and years. Around 5 mins there's a great breakdown and Ronan incites more carnage before the riff machine takes hold again. The section at 5:40 where the pace begins to drop is a fantastic intro into the hell that awaits. The Slug unleash a massively powerful doom section with some siren-like guitar sounds and it seems like the troll might have met his demise. 

'Bloodburns' follows with a slightly different vibe in the vein of Orange Goblin except with Ronan putting Ben Ward to shame with his inner monster sounds. It is an incredibly tight unit and Sean's brother Micheal Sullivan is a total powerhouse on drums, allowing the guitars to run riot. Bass player Eoghan Wynne is in charge of the low-end territory by capturing the deep sludge sound and allowing the two guitarists to add layers to the crucifying delivery. The breakdown around 01:30 is another section which is hugely reminiscent of the artwork and I can't escape the thought of this brutal gluttonous beast slowly sliming along leaving destruction in its wake. (It'd make a hell of a music video guys). The tempo changes are rife in this track too and provides a true appreciation of how diverse this band can be.

The third track 'Subterranean' is the shortest on the EP with a run-time of 04:53. For me, this just means that these guys are gonna squeeze 7 minutes of riffs into a shorter track which is even more enticing. This tells the story of the Kraken rising from the depths to carry out some terror upon mortal men. So yes... we now have a combination of the Slug and the Kraken. There are some utterly filthy riffs present in this track again, especially in the section around 2min 20secs - it comes in like a hammer blow and doesn't subside until the Slug deems fit. The section at 3:15 has a slight Mastodon vibe to it and is executed with deadly precision courtesy of a ripping lead part. The outro is a great ending to the track with Ronan's roars of 'Let the Kraken rise!' slowly fading into the deep subterranea. 

The final track 'Unit' is another 7 minute titan. This contains by far my favourite riff from the whole EP. It's the kind of riff bands spend decades looking for and the Slug lads just blast it out like it's another day in the office.  It's simply a piece of beautiful savagery. This track was also probably the highlight of their performance on the New Blood stage at Bloodstock Festival this year which you can find on YouTube. Around 5 mins they introduce a sweet breakdown which opens up into another monstrous riff procession. Finally, the last riff at 6:15 is a perfect close to this song and to the whole EP. It allows each member to really shred out their last drop of sweat and Ronan's fierce roar slowly drifts away. 

'Brutal Gluttonous Beast' is an unbelievably solid debut EP from Ten Ton Slug. Absolutely crammed with riffs and the stories behind the songs combined with the imagery of the beast provide a superb visual accompaniment to their auditory devastation. Extremely promising beginning for a band that are deeply rooted in the sludge/groove metal genre and can deliver the goods with devastating power and magnitude

Brutal Gluttonous Beast” is available now


Band info: bandcamp || facebook


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