This week: Brass Hearse, The Obsessed, Boson
Brass Hearse, S/T: Available December 1 (Burning Witches Records)
What happens when Wolfmen From Mars teams up with Colonel Creep? Pure sonic joy, as evidenced from the first two Brass Hearse singles that have dropped recently, “In Death (I’ll Love You More)” and “Living For The Grave.” More than just Wolfmen From Mars with vocals, Brass Hearse brings the best elements from the two original projects and expands their musical palette. “Living For The Grave,” for example, sounds almost like classic Black Sabbath. Neither track, though, appear on the forthcoming debut EP.
The six track, self-titled album feels a lot like excellent 1980s dark wave with just a touch of metal and experimental sounds to set it apart from the neo-dark wave pack. The sound is addictive. After a short instrumental intro, “Procession Etiquette,” the album goes into what has to be one of my favorite songs of the year, “Rain Grey, Dark Sky.” If you’ve been following the coming of Brass Hearse on their various social media accounts, then you may be familiar with the incredible artwork associated with them. The simplistic skull-centric art is a real complement to the music and helps set a tone for what you’re about to hear. The group has created a cool personality for itself and I hope we get a lot more from this project in the future. Hit Bandcamp for the music.
The Obsessed, S/T: Available November 17 (Relapse Records)
I hope you know the name Scott “Wino” Weinrich, because you really should. In 1986 he replaced Scott Reagers as vocalist for the seminal Doom Metal band, Saint Vitus. Before that though, he led the Maryland metal band The Obsessed. Though The Obsessed have existed since 1976 with various line ups and recorded an album for Metal Blade in 1985, they didn’t have an official debut until 1990, when Wino left Saint Vitus to reform the band. Now, if I’m being completely honest, I prefer Saint Vitus. I love them. That said, The Obsessed is more accessible to a wider audience. While both bands share a heavy Black Sabbath influence, The Obsessed tend to play faster and rock out more than the godfathers of the current Doom/Sludge metal scene. Songs like “Tombstone Highway” and “Forever Midnight” are so damn good and pretty indicative of the album as a whole. It’s basically just a great metal album. Relapse Records have put together a stellar package including the cassette demo Concrete Cancer and a slew of live tracks.
Boson, Domain of Ember: Available now (Anxious and Angry Records)
Minneapolis, MN’s Boson have released an absolutely epic EP. Domain of Ember is a perfect balance of doom metal and hardcore, played with intensity and brimming with talent and good ideas. These songs are really fucking good and I’d love to see Boson live. They build up soaring melodic moments filtered through knuckle-dragging rage. The album is bookended by my two favorite tracks, “Shadowlands” and “Prayer of Ash.” For Doom fans, Boson is a group to watch and Domain of Ember is a fantastic debut.