Friday 28 September 2018


By: Nikos Mixas
Art by: Joshua M. Wilkinson

It’s the September edition of THE SLUDGELORD 666 PACK REVIEW”!  This is the time of year that some of you are rearranging your band shirt collection by swapping out sleeveless shirts with hoodies and raglans.  In addition, tours are cropping up all over the place and if you’re in a band and strive to score gigs, record albums, and hopefully tour one day, THE SLUDGELORD can help you hone those chops by reviewing your demo!  If you’re new to this, each and every month we handpick 6 review submissions and critique them by only using 6 words, then we rate them on a scale from 1 to 666!  Check out our fall flavored rating scale below: 

1 – I bet your band got lost in a corn maze and couldn’t figure how to get out?
2 – Gourds might be cool to look at, but that’s about it.  Your band is a gourd.      
3 – This is average, just like anything from Soufly these days.      
4 – I liken this to the excitement you get knowing that October, even more so, Halloween is right around the corner!      
5 – You know how pumpkin spice lattes are lame?  Well, pumpkin spice beers kick ass and so does your band. 
666THE SLUDGELORD awards you with the highest compliment it can give…. a 666 rating!!! 

Caveat:  Even though the 666 PACK REVIEW is meant to offer humorous critique, there are no safe spaces here and your gripes will only make you sound like a bellyacher.  THE SLUDGELORD is a picky listener…and doesn’t care what you think of his opinions….

1). Ritual Earth, “Demo” (Philadelphia, U.S.A.)    Rating: 666!

“Shoe in for Psycho Las Vegas.”

2). Hellavator, “Ruin” (Norway)   Rating: 4

“There’s a Candlemass element to it.”

3). Blank, “S/T” (Köln, Germany)   Rating: 4

“If Celeste played hardcore…in Germany.”

4). Vile Entity, “Vile Entity” (Tuscany, Italy)   Rating: 2

“There’s only one Bell Witch, OK???”

5). Udreka, “Gniew, trud i nocna zmora” (Gdynia, Poland)   Rating: 5

“Great stuff, but it needs vocals.”  

6). Victus, “Sacrifice” (Portsmouth, U.K.)   Rating: 3

“Orange Goblinish, but the vocals stink.”  

Band info: Ritual Earth || Hellavator || Blank || Udreka|| Victus

TRACK PREMIERE: Marrowfields offers punishing and haunting debut “Birth of the Liberator"

Massachusetts doom metal band, Marrowfields, premiere their first single from their upcoming debut album “Metamorphoses”. The album is a concept record loosely based on Ovidian folklore and mythology. Plans for a release in late 2018 to early 2019 are underway, with physical media planned for tape, CD, and LP.

The first single, “Birth of the Liberator”, gives the listener a taste of all of the different complexities the band has to offer. From crushing doom riffs with soaring clean vocals to death / black influences, Marrowfields offer a punishing and haunting approach for fans of the doom metal genre.  Check it out below exclusively at THE SLUDGELORD and watch your speakers die.  

Band info: facebook

Thursday 27 September 2018

ALBUM PREMIERE: DEMANDE À LA POUSSIÈRE deliver hypnotic and paralysing debut

French Blackened Post-Core band DEMANDE À LA POUSSIÈRE are set to release their self-titled debut album this coming Friday September 28th via Argonauta Records. The band delivers an impressive hypnotic yet aggressive sound which moves from Blackened Post Metal to Sludge and Doom, with an apocalyptic vibe of ambient bleakness. Dive into the dark sound of DEMANDE À LA POUSSIÈRE and stream their full album below, yurn up the volume and let your speaker die.   "DEMANDE À LA POUSSIÈRE” is available to purchase (HERE)
Band info: facebook

ALBUM PREMIERE: Embrace the vile discomfort of PILLARS seismic "Onward to Nothingness"

Harnessing the powers of anguish and majesty simultaneously, PILLARS carve a tortured place in the psyche of doom and sludge with an unshakably focused assault on the senses. Harsh, brooding, and calculated, the music drags your soul through the muck and buries you, your screams a part of the choir of devastation. Sacrificing the vintage and retro flare commonplace in the genre as of late and replacing it with the vile discomfort of a forgotten past, PILLARS bring only agony and promise only torment. Prepare your grave..

"Onward to Nothingness" is the band’s first full length and is the follow up to their 2017 EP, "Pyres and Gallows". "Onwards to Nothingness" definitely shows the evolution of the band whose sound has matured to a darker and heavier aesthetic. Fans of With the Dead, Bell Witch, Conan, and doom legends Moss, will certainly embrace this offering.  Today THE SLUDGELORD exclusively brings this monumental record is full for your ears only.  Check it out below, so listen in and watch your speakers die.   "Onward to Nothingness" is available now via Seeing Red Records and can be ordered (HERE)

Band info: Facebook

ALBUM PREMIERE: Ambassador deliver a cavernous and explorative musical masterwork on "Belly of the Whale"

Debut album “Belly of the Whale” by Ambassador, is a cavernous musical quest fusing heart rending doom, shoegazing aesthetics, and a deeps pop sensibility. Hailing from Baton Rouge, Louisiana, “Belly of the Whale”, is set to drop on September 28, 2018. Eluding the stale tropes of modern rock, Ambassador evokes a sense of maturity and sonic exploration but with their emotional and vulnerable sounds remaining rooted in post rock, progressive metal and southern blues. The band has been compared to groups like Dredg, Pink Floyd and A Perfect Circle, featuring introspective and ethereal lyrics supported by concise grooves all defined by an ominous sense of melody. Each composition exposes new colours and textures with its own distinct energy and today at THE SLUDGELORD we’re proud to be able to premiere this truly one of a kind record, check it out in full below and you can order it now (HERE)

Band info: Facebook || Bandcamp

Tuesday 25 September 2018

ALBUM PREMIERE: Hell In Town have produced a groove-laden brand of Heavy on new album "Bones"

When a new band and subsequent debut record hits your inbox, with descriptions of groove laden heaviness, and song craft laden with sludgy riffs, my interest levels are immediately spiking.. Enter stage left, French sluggers HELL IN TOWN, who conjure up a strong sense of southern heaviness on forthcoming record “Bones”. A southern fried riff machine but with an indefinable French quality, “Bones” is a record of notable distinction but armed with that essential addictive quality.

“Bones” is a record to quench the thirsts of those with the most insatiable appetite for riffs and today we can exclusively premiere the record in below.  Turn it up loud and let your speakers die, because we have HELL IN TOWN.  "Bones" is released on September 28th on CD via and on all digital platforms

Band info: facebook

Monday 24 September 2018

ALBUM REVIEW: Conan, "Existential Void Guardian"

By; Richard Maw

Album Type: Full Length
Date Released: 14/09/2018
Label: Napalm Records


“Existential Void Guardian” CD//DD//2LP track listing:

1.Prosper On The Path
2.Eye To Eye To Eye
4.Amidst The Infinite
5.Volt Thrower
7.Eternal Silent Legend

The Review:

The foremost disciples of tone are back with this superbly titled fourth full length studio record. Ever since “Horseback Battle Hammer”, Conan have carved out their own niche and become hugely influential in doing so. Amp and pedal worship was never the same after these guys, but really it is the music that matters here. Conan have done the almost impossible and become a kind of Iron Maiden-esque entity within the doom scene. They don't sound like anyone else, have their own unique artwork, tour endlessly and write about things their audience is interested in. They are unique and whilst being labelled “doom” they operate in a field of one.

Opener “Prosper On The Path” is massive in sound, the contrasted vocals of Jon Davis and Chris Fielding work superbly and the drum sound is absolutely immense- the playing of Johnny King also deserves mention as it has slotted right in with the band and added an extra dimension to their sound. Conan work their magic by weaving soundscapes and moods rather than catchy tunes. It's riff worship, it's “the sound” but despite all their success (and what is effectively brand identity), they won't be troubling the radio airwaves anytime soon. Provided this is no problem for you, then the likes of “Eye to Eye to Eye” will bludgeon you effectively and introduce no small amount of time changes into the bargain. The throwaway grind of “Paincantation” is a huge departure, but only a brief one. The rest of the album takes things back to low and slow territory- with fast bits, of course- that have been part of the sub-genre since Sabbath.

Interestingly, there is nothing that extends beyond seven minutes here and of the seven tracks, perhaps “Amidst The Infinite” feels epic- but is not necessarily so. Certainly, the tempos are low and the riffs are creeping horrors in places. Chris Fielding has excelled himself with the production; it really is fantastic. It is Conan's best sounding record, which is saying something as they have all been sonic terrors. It is as huge as “Blood Eagle” and “Revengeance” but with more clarity and power.

Advance single “Volt Thrower” is the most immediate track on here, with its off kilter rhythms and head nodding groove, finding the band sounding almost like High on Fire and is a great track. It's vicious as well as huge. “Vexxagon” is similarly insistent and swinging and again shows Conan to be more catchy than you might have expected. Truly, this is headbanging stuff.

Just like that, the beastly bass groove of “Eternal Silent Legend” ushers in the last track on the record. Only seven tracks, but is there any need for more? For me, a little of Conan can go a long way; six tracks proper is about right. The live bonuses are well performed and sound fantastic- but they are superfluous to requirements and are just cool to hear/nice to have as add ons... come to think of it, they are quite literally bonuses!

All fans will have their favourite Conan album. For me, it is “Blood Eagle” and “Existential Void Guardian” has not changed that so far. It is a close second, I'll say that. I prefer this to both “Monnos” and “Revengeance” as it shows the band doing what they do best. If anyone wanted to hear Conan for the first time, I could not argue with directing them to this masterful work. I am enjoying the record hugely; I'm reviewing this after buying the CD. I heard the stream, liked it and wanted to own it. I'm glad I did, as Conan need all our support if heavy music is to press on effectively. We need leaders as well as followers. They have become standard bearers of sorts and even if you don't like them... you know them when you hear them. Such is their power and the source of appeal. They have “something” and have managed to capture that “something” in the studio again. No mean feat.

“Existential Void Guardian” is available here

Band info: Facebook || Bandcamp

Friday 21 September 2018

SATAN'S DOZEN: 13 Unearthly Hymns Unearthed #11 (August 2018)

By: Andrei Moose
Artwork by: Josh Mashesh

“SATAN’S DOZEN” is THE SLUDGELORD’s attempt to present the very best music the underground scene has to offer. Each and every month our member of the Russian chapter Andrei Moose painstakingly sifts through the best new releases on bandcamp and chooses 13 of the best and bundles them together into the mightiest riff sandwich.

Whilst all the albums we have included below are top tier stuff, we have compiled them into a chart on a sliding scale of 13-1. So we hope you dig our selections from June/August 2018 and enjoy “13 Unearthly Hymns Unearthed”.    These bands need more exposure, so go “like” “share” and “follow” their pages, but most of all enjoy some of the best music the underground has to offer.  THE SLUDGELORD most sincerely approves.   Now, turn up the volume and let your speaker die.

13. Rivers Of Gore, “Rivers Of Gore” (Méx., Mexico) Released August 4, 2018

Stoner - Doom / Stoner - Rock

12. Super Moon, “Disciple ” (Omaha, Nebraska) Released August 9, 2018

Stoner - Rock / Stoner - Metal

11. Lophius, “Lophius” (Copenhagen, Denmark) Released June 4, 2018

Stoner-Rock / Stoner-Doom

10. Young Bull, “Midnight Climax” (Lawrence, Kansas) Released June 8, 2018

Hardcore / Stoner-Metal

9. Red Sun Atacama, “Licancabur” (Paris, France) Released August 8, 2018


8. Swamp Hawk, “Swamp Hawk” (Lexington, Kentucky) Released August 24, 2018


7. ThunderWhip, “Forever's End” (Esbjerg, Denmark) Released August 7, 2018

Stoner-doom / Stoner-metal

6. Grovel, “Trash Poetry” (Boston, Massachusetts) Released July 31, 2018

Sludge / Stoner-Doom

5. SALTBUCK, “CITYSLICKER” (London, UK) Released August 20, 2018

Doom / Sludge

4. O’K and The Night Crew, “O’K and The Night Crew” (Hartford, Connecticut) Released June 28, 2018

Stoner / Blues / Rock

3). Jack Harlon &The Dead Crows, “Hymns” (Bendigo, Australia) Released July 6, 2018

Psychedelic / Stoner-Rock / Stoner-Doom

2. Saint Karloff, “All Heed The Black God” (Oslo, Norway) Released July 27, 2018


1. Leeched, “You Took The Sun When You Left” (Manchester, UK) Released August 24, 2018

Blackened-hardcore / Metal / Powerviolence

Thursday 20 September 2018

INTERVIEW: Wolvhammer @ Psycho Las Vegas 2018

The third edition of Psycho Las Vegas hit the jackpot with those that attended the 4-day bacchanal recently.  Dozens of bands from both the United States and abroad descended on Sin City, more specifically, the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino to perform, party and partake in other sinful delights.  One of those bands, Wolvhammer, sat down with THE SLUDGELORD to discuss Psycho Las Vegas, what they’re up to and what’s next for them.   

SLUDGELORD:                       I'm here with Wolvhammer and they're playing Psycho Las Vegas tonight at...

Adam:                                   8:30 on the Vinyl Stage.

SLUDGELORD:                       So, what do you guys think of Psycho Las Vegas so far?

Adam:                                   Amazing. I've always heard really good things about the festival, so it was really, really awesome for us to get asked to do it, and a lot of friends here and shit, so I'm looking forward to it.

Gary:                                     We've been running into people left, right and center, hanging out, having a great time so far. Bunch of great bands we get to go watch, you know. It'll be fun.

SLUDGELORD:                       Cool, and how long are you guys sticking around in Vegas and what do you plan to do while you're here?

Adam:                                   I actually fly out tomorrow. It's my birthday tomorrow, so I'm going home to hang out with my girlfriend. But, yeah, these guys will be here all weekend.

Adam:                                   Yeah, John, Garrett are all going to be here watching bands, hanging out, and then we're leaving Sunday night to go head back to Chicago.

SLUDGELORD:                       And you're going to Chicago and you're going to?

Adam:                                   Minnesota.

SLUDGELORD:                       You're in Minneapolis?

Adam:                                   Yeah, right outside Minneapolis.  

SLUDGELORD:                       So, does anybody in the band gamble?

Gary:                                     I won a hundred and eighteen bucks playing the Sharknado slots earlier this morning.

SLUDGELORD:                       Yeah? Is that what you play? You play the slots?

Gary:                                     I mean, I play anything that strikes me, I like black jack. Video blackjack's good, but we're just sitting there, sat down, threw some money into it and couple spins in and it was just a hundred and eighteen bucks. It's like, "Time to leave!"

SLUDGELORD:                       How about you Adam?

Adam:                                   I'm too frugal with my money.

SLUDGELORD:                       Ah, okay.

Adam:                                   I spend money like stupidly enough as is I don't want to start gambling on top of it.

SLUDGELORD:                       Anybody else in the band play tables or anything like that?

Gary:                                     I don't think so. I don't think anybody else really gambles. I like drinking and bad decision making.

SLUDGELORD:                       You're in the right place.

Gary:                                     Put me in Vegas.

SLUDGELORD:                       Yeah. Have you been to Vegas before?

Gary:                                     Oh, many times. I tour for a living outside of the band. Driving, doing merch, touring around, stuff like that with bands so I'm here fairly regularly. But this time we're here and I'm not having to actually like, you know, go do a different show and be there for eight, nine hours. So, having free time means that I spend a little bit sitting at the tables and the machines, you know?

SLUDGELORD:                       Cool, now what bands do you guys plan on checking out or have you checked out since you've been here?

Adam:                                   I really want to see Homewrecker, Survive ...

Gary:                                     Yeah. Eyehategod, High on Fire, definitely going to see them.

Adam:                                   Of course, I want to see Danzig tomorrow but I'm flying home. I would love to see Godflesh.

Gary:                                     Yeah, Godflesh is gonna to be great. I’ll make sure to take pictures for you.

Adam:                                   Oh Yeah? Thank you!  There's so many good bands on this so, I'm just again so excited they asked us to be a part of it.

SLUDGELORD:                       So I'm assuming it's your first time?

Gary:                                     Yeah, it's our first time here.

SLUDGELORD:                       Didn't you guys roll through Phoenix a few weeks ago?

Gary:                                     On our last tour yeah with Uada we did. We did that and it was like right towards the end, 'cause it ended in Texas.

SLUDGELORD:                       Now, you know what The Metal Archives are?

Adam:                                   Yeah.

SLUDGELORD:                       So, they label you guys as blackened sludge metal. Do you think that's accurate?

Adam:                                   The sludge thing has always been interesting to me, 'cause like, when the band first started, before I was in it, I feel like it had a lot more of that sound going on, but like ever since I've been in the band, I don't really think we do anything that I would personally put in like the sludge genre. I think it's just because we play kinda slowly, sometimes? It's like a lazy label to just throw at it because we play somewhat slower tempos. I don't really think it's sludge influenced at all, personally, but I mean, if that's what people hear, you know. I get it.

Gary:                                     On the new record, there's more crust stuff than there is sludge stuff, so by that it's black and crust, black and whatever, but I mean there's just some slow parts but I wouldn't necessarily call that sludgy either. Not in the sense of New Orleans sludge or anything like that so ...

Adam:                                   That's a tag that's followed the band for ages.

SLUDGELORD:                       Yeah, if it's on that, that's almost the bible of heavy bands for the most part, people know what they're doing, they're usually hitting that site first.  It personally gives me a baseline, who's in the band? How many albums do they have out, and what the general description is. 

Adam:                                   Yeah, I definitely go to that website quite a bit.

Gary:                                     Same.

SLUDGELORD:                       For me, when I research bands, I always hit that site. But, like I said, I've listened to you guys before and I was like...sludge?  Really???

Adam:                                   Like I never got an Eyehategod vibe from our music.

Nikos Mixas (c)

SLUDGELORD:                       So yeah, that's interesting, since you mentioned the new album, how's the latest album "The Monuments of Ash and Bone" been received, so far to your knowledge?

Adam:                                   I mean, the press for it has been great so far. I wish with my scheduling right now, with two bands dropping records pretty close, it's been hard for me to balance schedules. This is the first time I've played shows on the record cycle so far with these guys. I'm really stoked about the record though. I think it's, I know it's stereotypical to say but, It's the best thing we've done, and I'm just excited that it's finally out and the press has been awesome so far.

SLUDGELORD:                       You guys toured with Taake in 2015? Right? So what is your take or opinion of them having to cancel their U.S. tour, earlier this year.

Adam:                                   See, I don't really know what happened with that, the only thing that was interesting to me was Metal Sucks, kinda like the charge on doing what they do or whatever on the internet, and talking about all this shit that the singer had done in the past. But what was really hypocritical to me is when we did that tour, Metal Sucks was actually like the head sponsor on that tour. It was Metal Sucks presents Taake & Wolvhammer.

Gary:                                     And for those events they're trying to get 'em shut down for too, like years before that, and they said "Oh that we talked to 'em, we knew they're not these kind of people, and there's posts of it, people have screenshots of it and everything where they're defending them, and then they get a tour shutdown and it's like, well, there wasn't a time machine, the events took place before that tour, it was fine to analyze it then, not fine now.

Adam:                                   Yeah and it's not like I can get behind what he did or anything but like I got to spend a month with those guys and I never got any vibe like that from them at all.

Adam:                                   So it was disheartening to see the fact that they had like a really nice tour, really cool package just getting shut down over some bullshit.

SLUDGELORD:                       And the dates fell too, cities like New York, Chicago, and then the rest of them?

Adam:                                   They just went and, it's unfortunate but it's the climate we live in and, I understand but, It's just unfortunate. 'Cause they're good people. Like, I know them pretty well. It's just a bunch of bullshit to me.

SLUDGELORD:                       And what do you think about the overall state of heavy music?

Adam:                                   I mean, there's a lot of good bands out, good records coming out, for sure. I've been a nerd about metal and punk music since I was a little kid so.

SLUDGELORD:                       So you remember when the bottom dropped out?

Adam:                                   Oh yeah.

SLUDGELORD:                       When it came back, and how it came back?

Adam:                                   For sure. Yeah, it's huge right now which is great, and when I was in Europe you know, you see there's so much more respect I feel like over there for heavy music, and you know, you can get festivals everywhere and then the states, this is pretty much besides Maryland Deathfest, the big one. So, it's nice to see it on the rise.
Gary:                                     Good to see U.S. festivals if you can go to with great lineups and then you'll actually have people come out and you know the festivals will do well, and you don't have to worry about it. In Europe it does seem there's more of a respect for it, cause you end up with these festivals that are just 60, 70, 80 thousand people going to see a bunch of heavy metal bands and, turns out well it's always the holy grail of festivals in Europe. You wanna go over there and play, cause you get to see it and it's just this whole massive undertaking for the course of three days, just so you can have a bunch of kids come together and you know, adults too but like, watch heavy bands and that's it. Nothing else, just get together and have a good time. 

SLUDGELORD:                       You guys are currently on tour right now?

Adam:                                   Technically yeah, but this is our last day. We played at three shows just to get down here so that we could do this.

SLUDGELORD:                       Alright, so it's a kind of like mini tour.

Adam:                                   Yeah, yeah.

SLUDGELORD:                       How was it so far?

Adam:                                   It was great man, our new fill in guitar player Jarrett Pritchard has been absolutely killing it, so, I have no complaints at all. I think we sound great.

SLIUDGELORD:                      Are you the writer for the guitars?

Adam:                                   No. Oh that was Jeff Wilson.

SLUDGELORD:                       Okay, did he do the album? Did he do a little of the tracks?

Adam:                                   Yup.

SLUDGELORD:                       Is he an old school metal head?

Adam:                                   Yeah.

SLUDGELORD:                       Does he like Possessed?

Adam:                                   Oh yeah, for sure.

SLUDGELORD:                       I know. You know how I know? 'Cause he's using the same effects like Larry LaLonde, that echo sound on, I forgot what song, it's like the third song on the album that you guys did. There's a solo in there, and I'm like, that dude, that sounds like Possessed. That effect that he used is on there.

Adam:                                   Is that "Call Me Dead"?

SLUDGELORD:                       I think it is.

Adam:                                   So that would actually be the guy who's filling in for us right now, Jarrett, He's the guy that did the solo on that song.

SLUDGELORD:                       Did he?

Adam:                                   Yeah.

SLUDGELORD:                       'Cause, that echo that he uses, sounds just like the Larry LaLonde echo, like when he played for Possessed. Possessed is one of my favorite bands so that's why I caught it right away, I was like "wow, like no one's doing that right now".

Adam:                                   Yeah, Jarrett an old school Florida death metal dude so he played in the band "Eulogy".

Gary:                                     That was all Jarrett's bag. He wrote all the stuff Eulogy and had him out on with us great so that just can see, engineered, and you know, played on the record, did solos, all that, helped record the record, so, having he already knows the material intimately, and now he's out here playing shows with us so, awesome.

SLUDGELORD:                       Now, are there any more festival dates on the horizon for you guys?

Adam:                                   Not at the moment but I hope so. 'Cause I love playing festivals. And I just want to get Wolvhammer in front of bigger crowds. So I really am open to it of course, I would love to do Maryland Deathfest.

SLUDGELORD:                       If you had to pick one in Europe, which one would it be?

Gary:                                     Ooh, I mean, I don't know if we would fit but, I'd love ... Oh, that is hard. We would do Brutal Assault.

Adam:                                   Yeah, Party San is cool.

Gary:                                     The obligatory Hellfest is one.
Adam:                                   Summer Breeze.

Gary:                                     Wacken, man there's....

Adam:                                   Any of 'em!

Gary:                                     Yeah!

SLUDGELORD:                       Well, if you had to pick one...

Gary:                                     Personally, I would love to do Obscene Extreme but that's just because I wanna see all the bands that are at Obscene Extreme every year

Adam:                                   Yeah, Czech republic.

Gary:                                     Oh I love it there, it's wonderful.

Adam:                                   Dude, I love that place.

Gary:                                     Yeah, but.

Gary:                                     I dunno how well we'd go over there but, hell I'll do it.

SLUDGELORD:                       And then, what's next on the horizon for Wolvhammer after this little segment is over?

Adam:                                   I think we're gonna start working on new material for a new record, I'm pretty booked up 'til the end of the year with the Skeleton Witch. So, any touring will probably have to happen like early 2019, but.

Gary:                                     He's got Skeleton Witch, I know I've got tours booked after the end of the year so anything we do is gonna have to be at the earliest, early next year.

Adam:                                   I think the main goal is to hunker down and start working on new material so, just take it from there and see what happens. If anything comes up offer wise, yeah, we'll jump on it.

Gary:                                     Of course there's always bands that you can get an offer from. You figure out how to make that shit work.

Adam:                                   Oh yeah, absolutely!


Band info: bandcamp || facebook