Wednesday 15 October 2014

Sloath - Deep Mountain (Album Review)

Album Type: Album
Date Released: November 10th 2014
Label: Riot Season Records

Deep Mountain – S/T - track listing:

1. Juvis Priestly (3:18)
2. Persian Rug (4:19)
3. Legs (4:30)
4. Deep Mountain (6:48)
5. The Toucher (11:11)
6. Men Of March (7:46)


2007: Five veterans of Brighton's rock scene gather with the intention of playing slower, louder and heavier than any of them have previously. Initial songs are developed with the aid of weapons-grade skunk, Polish beer and a heady cocktail of cheap rum and apple tango. Tunes built from super-distorted power chords and crushing, throbbing, squalling drone stretch at times past the half-hour mark. Early gigs are marked by deafened, blissed-out audiences, blown amplifiers and mid-set fist fights with venue managers.

2010: Debut album finally released on Riot Season, featuring three monolithic slabs of psych-sludge, but the band has already moved on, having written and discarded a whole LP's worth of new material, before holing up in their practise space to record six brand new numbers for album number two. The songs are shorter and faster, unlike the mixing process, which due to various members' life stuff takes four years to complete. In the interim, various comings and goings leave the band stripped back to a four-piece, working on yet another batch of new material in twice-yearly spurts of activity.

2014: New songs are debuted at a couple of riotous February gigs before the band scatters once more to the four corners of the globe. LP #2 'Deep Mountain' is finally completed and handed in to Riot Season. Touring plans are laid and delayed...

Thus far Sloath have shared stages with Acid Mothers Temple, Decapante, Kogumaza, Om, Part Chimp, Bardo Pond, The Unit Ama and White Mice. They intend to hit the road in support of 'Deep Mountain'.


Luke - guitars
Leon - guitars
Kai - vocals
Dave - drums
Tom – bass


Sloath from the English south coast has been around since 2007 and released their self-titled debut on Riot Season back in 2010. Taking time writing and recording a follow up, 4 years to be precise, their excellent sophomore wax 'Deep Mountain' is about to hit us early in November, again courtesy of Riot Season. Being a brand new aquaitance to me and hitting home real good with yours truly, I went into P.I. mode trying to learn more about the band. However, that's easier said than done since very little information about them can be gathered. At first that bothered me since I am a line-up freak wanting to know who's who. But as I kept listening to 'Deep Mountain' I grew to like their secretiveness. After all, music should do the talking which Sloath certainly focus on to great aplomb, meaning OCD folks like myself have to pay attention to the important stuff. So apart from unleashing a great, great album these Blighty boys are teaching an old dog, me, knew tricks. Who knew that that was even possible?

Already when the first bars of opener 'Jurvis Priestly' have been played, Sloath sets the record straight. Their Modus Operandi is slowish, pulverisingly heavy doomy sludge á la Sleep and Harvey Milk soaked for years in a huge riff casket finally seasoned with deep reverb. The end result is an extremely hypnotic and mesmerizing head trip of the highest order. Being the fastest track, everything's relative, on the album the pace is brought down a notch or two as 'Persian Rug' slowly slithers it's way through a haze of afghan kush and spaced out riffing. Close your eyes and man, you're off to another world! Next up is 'Legs' where Sloath goes bluesy. The whole approach of the song is steeped in blues, if you don't believe me just listen to the slide solo. Nuff said, great song you hear?!

The title track picks up where 'Legs' left off, the only exception is a reversion towards their love for sludge, mixed with psychedelic jam parts. Sounds strange? Well, it isn't. In fact, it's bloody marvelous. The longest song on the album follows, The Toucher', and it crawls along slowly and purposefully, building up feelings of elatedness and out-of-body experience. Trance-inducing in it's repetiveness I feel cleansed and invigorated every time the song comes on. Ending in a full tilt blend of rifforama and psych, 'Men Of March' continues down headtrip alley allowing the listener another chance of astral travelling...and it couldn't be better.

My boss at The Sludgelord, Steve, has a knack for sending albums by, to me, unknown bands and I truly appreciate that. So many great bands would have flown past me undiscovered otherwise but now I am fortunate enough to hear so much great music. Sloath is defintely a top notch gang and I must check out their debut, as must you reader along with 'Deep Mountain' of course. If you as a listener want to be challenged while playing an album, then Sloath's the band for you. Great stuff!

Words by Håkan Nyman

Thanks to Andy at Riot Season Records for sending a promo to review. Deep Mountain will be available to buy on DD/Vinyl from November 10th 2014 on Riot Season Records

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