Monday 22 April 2013

Grey Host - Dawn For Vultures - Album Review

Dawn for Vultures cover art

Grey Host is a Sludge/Doom/Stoner Metal band from Cincinnati, Ohio, USA

The members are:

John - Guitars/Vocals
Jason - Guitars
Zac - Drums
Evan - Organ

Grey Host are a band who were featured on the blog back in 2011 and I rated their demo release very highly. Back then, they were purely an instrumental band. Now 2 years on the band have released their excellent debut album – Dawn For Vultures – A 6 song and 58-minute blast of haunting Sludge/Doom/Stoner Metal riffs blended with haunting atmospherics that will send a chill down your spine.

Grey Host have now added vocals to the mix and it is a decision that pays off big time. As it gives the band, a heavy and dangerous edge compared to their previous release. If you are a fan of Yob and Neurosis then you are going to love this album like I did.

First track – Noble Beast – wastes no time in bringing out the brutal riffs from the start with hard as nails grizzled vocals to match. This song feels like it was created on the harshest territory known to man. It has a primal edge waiting to devour any poor soul brave enough to listen to it. Superb down-tempo guitars drive the song through a barrage of noise and intense drumming.

Second Tack – Dunhill is a 10:36 minute epic that starts off with a superb haunting ambient-based riff that feels it will never end. It adds layers of eerie tension with each passing second. You know this track is going to break into loud scenes of chaos and it does. Just hold back and wait for the brilliant Sludge/Stoner Riffs to brutally pound your entire being into submission.

Up next is The Shaman – This is where Grey Host start to experiment with their sound. Now they add an organ to the mix and it works surprisingly well. Blending mid-paced creepy Sludge/Stoner Metal riffs with an organ gives this song a rather unnerving edge. Vocals are at a minimum here but when they do appear, they give the song a cool trippy psychedelic feel. If you are a fan of Across Tundras then you will find a few similarities with that great band during this song.

Fourth track – Wizard Sleeve – starts with a slow haunting ambient-based riff but it adds different layers and vibes with each passing second. Grey Host are definitely in their element here. It features more of the same great experimentation of sounds and noises. One of the best things about this track is the drumming. The drumming have a life of their own here. Slowly understated but still a majestic presence demanding your full attention. Wizard Sleeve is a beautifully understated orchestral movement of sounds between the vocals, guitars and drums that make it one of the album’s standout tracks.

Bonemother follows up next. Another outstanding epic track that features Grey Host and possibly their creative best on the album. Layers of noise and atmospherics come at you from every direction. Close your eyes and let Grey Host take over your soul with their blend of mystical haunting Sludge/Stoner riffs. Probably the trippiest track on the album. It has a great sense of fear and doom lurking in the background. Wait for the final 2.30 minutes when some superb organ based music closes this song on a high.

Lastly, we have the best track on the album – Dawn For Vultures. A sprawling 10-minute epic that harks back the early days of Pelican but with a gloomier Doom Metal feel. A slow-burning masterpiece full of emotions and riffs could easily be considered one of the best instrumental tracks of 2013. It is seriously that good. It ends the album on an almighty high.

Grey Host have released something special here folks. We are big fans of it at the blog. It is one of those albums that become better with each listen.

I cannot wait to see where Grey Host go on from here as they released an incredible album. Excellent and Highly Recommended.

You can buy the album now from BandCamp.

Check This Brilliant Band from the links below.