So much music, so little time.
I guess that’s what Grey Stag are thinking as ‘The Guide’ opens: right from the first beat, their singer is a-bellowing, with no other introduction to their grizzly but detailed sound.
Proggy sludge, they say.
I’d say its just a touch more polished than sludge, not as slow and not as ugly – but I can see where they’re coming from.
They’re like some sort of cross between Zhora, Triggerman and Five Will Die – the first for the music and the second for the vocals.
It’s melodic, thickly laid, and with a rich bounce in most tracks.
But they’re clearly aspiring to more than what most sludge offers. They even nod to the modern Opeth rhythm style on occasions.
And one of those occasions is the best track on here, ‘Labrynth’, which from relatively humble beginnings builds to a superb climax with some stellar double kick underpinning.
The wandering bassline underneath is a big part of the cool sound here, and that charred Akerfeldt roar completes the picture.
It feels huge and majestic, and you want it to go on for a lot longer than it does.
A bassy bounce returns for ‘Those Of Stone’ – a glugging, fat low tone that’ll please fans of the Daniel Bergstrand school of production.
Upsum: two very strong tracks at the back that show off their chops admirably, but a little so-so to start off with. Sounds like it’ll be powerful live though.
– Earl Grey ::: 02/10/18