Wednesday 14 September 2016

THE SLUDGELORD PRESENTS: The Sour 16 for August 2016


It is time cast our minds back upon the month of August and digest the 16 albums that would become August’s sacrilegious Sour 16’, the finest and most profane riffs around bundled together into a premium sized sonic soufflé.

You know the drill, each month; you the reader are unwittingly compiling a list of the top 16 records that we featured in August, covering all genres of metal.  Is it not a chart, in which reviewers or contributors extol their opinion about their favourite music.  The ‘Sour 16’ are the records that have been trending the most at Sludgelord Headquarters.
The results are compiled based on page views alone and calibrated into the list below. So kick back, with a cold one and let the power of the riff compel thee! All reviews can be viewed by clicking the artwork. (Total views since their publication are highlighted in red)

16). Bossk - "Audio Noir" (364)

The shimmering soundscapes of “The Reverie” gently ease the album into life. The track glides through waves of serene guitar atmospherics, before being crushed under a slab of molten distortion. Even though the classic quiet/loud dynamics of post-rock are employed here, Bossk manage to avoid the obvious, telegraphed crescendos by taking a more understated approach, conversely when they crank up, Bossk prove that they have honed their riffcraft to perfection. “Heliopause” is a relatively short burst of stoner aggravation while “Atomsmasher” fully delivers on the cataclysmic power of its name. In summation, Audio Noir” is a triumph for Bossk that sees them comfortably deliver on their fans’ anticipation for a full-length.

15). Body Void - "Ruins" EP (371)

Sounding like a seismic shift, 'Swans' instantly obliterates everything. The riffs slowly and mercilessly attack the central nervous system while the vocals suffocate and strangle. At the tail end of this EP comes the even more epic and gigantic 'Ruins', if you can imagine Andy Dufregne's escape in ' The Shawshank Redemption'; slow, filthy, dark, foreboding, this track is the embodiment of it. Body Void have set the bench mark pretty damn high now, surely they will follow this up with something truly amazing.

14). Warfather - "The Grey Eminence" (397)

“The Grey Eminence” is a better record than Warfather's debut (which was in itself a good album!) and is a credit to those involved. This is a style of death metal I like a lot; a mixture of all elements of the genre without too much of any one thing. This is controlled force and a must listen for death metal heads everywhere.

13)= Earthship - "Hallowed" & Khünnt - "Failures"  (405)

“Hallowed”is well represented with monolithic riffs, multi layered vocal arrangements and in standout track “Monolith” it delivers one of the heaviest moments within the course of the album. To me it appears as if the band had held back on us up until this point, because they have unleashed a truly astonishing album, which pummels and pounds you with a thick narcotic groove. This album is sonic alchemy of all their best elements, making this album a great listen and one to be admired.
Khünnt create the kind of bleak racket that would make even Khanate cry themselves to sleep, echoing the ragged noise rock monotony of Shit and Shine it is strangely euphoric and completely crushing in equal measure. “Failures” is a bold step forward from Khünnt. It sees them maintain their reputation for sonic drudgery while finding new ways to subject the listener to aural torment.

11). Howling Giant - “Black Hole Space Wizard”: Part 1” (EP) (469)

Howling Giant come across as a confident band that are bursting at the seams with invigorating hooks that sound as familiar as they are new. They have the discipline to take their time fleshing out riffs without losing sight of the song, their energy and passion is felt throughout, which is the glue that holds this EP together.

10). Make - "Pilgrimage of Loathing" (526)

An encompassing album that sees Make drag the psychedelia and post-metal of their previous recordings into a sludgy realm full of menacing atmospherics and hard-hitting riffs, Pilgrimage Of Hate is sure to please those who like their doom dark and heavy, but less predictable than the average group.

09). Lord Vicar - "Gates of Flesh" (551)

For anyone wanting quality traditional doom, the purchase of this album is a no brainer. Lord Vicar represents the very best in the genre and this album is a focused and fulfilling listen.

08). Hexxus - "Tunguska" (577)

Hexxus brings something different from the word go, desolation lays in their wake, pain and fear tremble before their sheer levels of decibel destruction.

7). Yeti On Horseback – “The Great Dying” (583)

Soaring melodies, crushing and enveloping riffs, brutal vocals, “The Great Dying” has got the lot! It's beautifully downtrodden in it's make up and utterly captivating.

6). Devil Electric - "The God's Below" (EP) (647)

Hailing from the Melbourne, Australia, Devil Electric unleash abevy combination of, ‘riffs of old and new in a collision of unholy matrimony’.

5). Black Tar Prophet/Iron Gavel - "Black Tar Prophet/Iron Gavel" Split (636)

4). Castle - "Welcome to the Graveyard" (829)

This is fantastic heavy metal of the most traditional kind, forged, I can only assume, in the fires of hell

3). Shadow Witch - "Sun Killer" (915)

This record is a fine debut and places the band amongst the retro rock/doom/metal scene but shows that they have a unique sound and approach. If you have been enjoying bands such as Demon Eye, R.I.P, Uncle Acid, Satans Satyrs, Electric Citizen and so on, well, Shadow Witch are better then some of them and can mix it with the best of them!

2). Slomatics – “Future Echo Returns” (1608)

When a band's guitarist has their own signature fuzz pedal, it's a safe bet that they can cut through solid rock with their riffs; when both guitarists have an alternate version of the same pedal then prepare your eardrums for some serious, rock crushing heaviosity. The towering heaviness of the riffs and the images of the infinite, shimmering darkness of space is executed and captured perfectly. An amazing album worthy of any and all praise it will undoubtedly receives.

1). SubRosa - "For This We Fought the Battle of Ages" (2694)

If you love really emotionally charged hard hitting music, give this record a listen. I had very high expectations of this record, and those expectations were met and then exceeded.

A big thank you as always to our amazing writers, your dedication knows no boundaries and for that I am truly grateful.  August’s “Sour 16” features reviews by:  Richard Maw, Dan Brownson, George Parr, Charlie Butler, Chris Bull, Hunter Young, Eric Crowe, Victor Van Ommen  & Gerardo Pacheco