There was blood, and maybe a few tears, too, but more than anything, Black Tusk was born from sweat. Formed in 2005 by three lifelong friends, the Savannah band welded together a three-pronged vocal attack, dirty punk, sludgy heavy metal, and a big fat dose of Motorhead to create what they called “swamp metal.” After the tragic death of bass player Athon in 2014, the remaining duo made the difficult decision to soldier on and carry on in his memory. Black Tusk has lived through the kind of hardship and heartbreak that would cripple a lesser band, but it’s that dedication, and gumption, and pure bullheaded stubbornness that’s taken them around the world and beyond.
Church of Misery hold the distinction of being one of the first doom metal bands to emerge from Japan. Founded by bass player Tatsu Mikami back in 1995, it reflected his musical inspirations – traditional doom metal like Saint Vitus and Black Sabbath, and the early seventies doom rock in the mould of Leaf Hound and Gun. Numerous line-up changes couldn't prevent the band from establishing a solid reputation in the Western doom scene, and in fact it has kept their sound evolving and sounding fresh over more than 20 years. Now with Mikami as the only remaining original member, the Church has in fact never sounded more alive.
Starting out in a small town in coastal Massachusetts as a shared musical passion between three long-time friends, Elder is the definition of a work in progress. With each new release, the group continues to meld the familiar sounds of Sleep‘s colossal riffage with an ever-evolving vision of soaring melodies and sonic soundscapes. This continuous quest for musical adventure has received praise from the traditional stoner/doom crowd, as well as reaching listeners outside this often insular scene. Their audience will find themselves locked into the trio’s lengthy epics, which toe the line between the chasms of classic stoner metal and mindblowing psychedelia.
Formed in 1988, EHG turned upside down the 90’s underground pioneering a unique sound copied by thousands in their wake, blending muddy riffs and sturdy rhythmic work with Mike Williams’ deranged poetry and an intimidating barricade of noise and feedback. Since then, they've survived line-up shuffles, label hassles, a short-lived split and the loss of original drummer Joey Lacaze in 2013. And after almost three decades of creating some of the most corrosive, vile music known to man, EyeHateGod still hasn't lost the piss and vinegar that fueled them back in '88. Now, with Mike fresh out of surgery, the band shows no sign of slowing down, touring intensively and preparing a new album.
A psych-blasted sludge-metal trio based in the traditionally black metal-oriented city of Gothenburg, Swedish doom rock unit Monolord was founded in 2013 around the talents of Thomas V Jäger (vocals, guitars), Esben Willems (drums), and Mika Häkki (bass). The band's 2014 debut LP, 'Empress Rising', was released via Riding Easy Records. It drew praise from a host of online zines, and quickly rose to the top of Bandcamp's doom charts. The follow-ups 'Vaenir' and 'Rust' along with a heavy bout of touring both at home and abroad have made Monolord a household name in the doom family over just a few years' time.
In a world gone mad, there are few certainties to cling to. But one thing remains forever unwavering and true: Orange fucking Goblin! Diehard exponents of the noble art of heavy metal since 1995, the London-based quartet have spent the last two decades steadily but surely establishing themselves as one of the UK’s most loved and respected bands. Starting out as one of the most important UK doom bands of the '90s, Goblin has been adding more and more influences to their unique sound, resulting in some of their best work being done over the last few years. 2018's 'The Wolf Bites Back' once again proved there's still a lot of creative fury in the Goblin's spirit.
Throughout 8 albums, the Italian powerhouse Ufomammut has developed a sound characterised by lengthy songs centered on repeated heavy riffs coupled with droning vocals, sound effects and synths. The band’s worldwide acclaim has grown wider with each release, to the point where they are now one of doom's most revered acts. The live show is supported by the internationally acclaimed video and graphic art of Malleus, a rock artists’ collective of which band members Poia and Urlo form a part. Their illustrations and animations match the monumental power of the music in sheer visceral impact, making Ufomammut a sensory live experience like no other.
For a band who traffic in measured, unhurried riffage, Richmond’s Windhand have moved awfully quickly over the last few years. Founded in 2009, the Virginia quintet have been making waves since the release of their 2010 practice space demo. Their self-titled debut immediately became an underground hit, selling out multiple vinyl presses in a matter of months. But the band has proven to be no flash-in-the-pan internet phenomenon. Throughout 4 albums and incessant touring, they have evolved their Sabbath-with-siren-vocals underpinning with every step they take, leading to some of the most accomplished songwriting to be found in the genre.