Hooded Menace | ‘Labyrinth Of Carrion Breeze’
Tortuous, underground Doom – there’s nothing like it.
A few months back the crepuscular Ruins Of Beverast gained Album Of The Month here for their most recent trawl through the depths of despair.
Now it’s the turn of Hooded Menace, whose new 12″ EP is pretty much just as good as that near-masterpiece.
It is only two tracks long. Yet they are nothing less than perfectly formed slabs of utterly despondent, cavern dwelling, vintage doom / death, commingling double kick rumble with brilliant riffs.
The first track, ‘Chasm Of The Wraith’, opens with a melody that immediately recalls Saturnus, before going into a low chug redolent of the brilliant and mostly overlooked Indesinence.
Slowly, surely, and packed with a new riff at every turn, the track develops and opens into a harsh and atmospheric tour de force.
Believe it or not, there are a few tones similar to Ireland’s own fantastic Graveyard Dirt in here as well, most especially in those moody lead guitar lines.
It’s second track ‘The Creeping Flesh’ however that wins this beautiful release the coveted Album Of The Month award.
Here is where the darkness really descends, covering their band like a thundercloud.
This track is heavier, and with the kind of solemn bent as oldest Anathema and Paradise Lost, except probably heavier and more lugubrious than both.
The main hook in this track is a textbook in dark, doom melody.
What’s striking here is that this is not some inaccessilbe underground navel gazing. These tracks, despite their weight and horror are entirely clear, resonating immediately with their dark grace.
There’s nothing muffled or deliberately obscured. It’s just riff after killer riff for both of these joyous sides.
Acquire it, post haste!
4.6 / 5 – Earl Grey ::: 03/02/14