Thursday, 22 March 2012

Uzala - S/T



I've found myself recently getting into a lot more doomy, sludgy stuff. I think it might as a way to balance some of the faster bands I've been listening, but I'm glad I've had the chance to check some of these bands out in recent months. I mean on this blog alone, I've reviewed records by Kollwitz and Within The Fall, and I found myself checking Procession too. Uzala are the latest band to drop into my inbox, so I couldn't wait to hear them.

Uzala are a mighty four piece from Boise, Idaho USA.

Tracklist:-

1. Batholith
2. The Reaping
3. Ice Castle
4. Fracture
5. Wardrums
6. Plague
7. Gloomy Sunday
8. Cataract (Cassette only)



Opener Batholith begins with a single guitar playing an already, almost hypnotic riff, before the doom kicks in. The sound is quite haunting, especially when the siren like vocals of Darcy Nutt rise out of the murky depths forged by the band. As with most doom records, the instruments do most of the work and the production has a certain, smoky vibe too it.

Second track The Reaping seems to be even slower and it sounds like the record was recorded entirely live, with no unwanted effects of embellishments. It's a hallucination inducing song, with the low end coming to the fore to add a buzzing, spitting heft to Uzala's sound. The solo during the song is really warming, before it reaches the slow, churning depths again as it comes to a close.

Each song on this record has a different feeling to it. All the parts seem to tell a story and play tricks on your senses, especially if you’re listening to it in a darkened room.
Fracture is a surprise, the riffs are like 70s prog, but the vocals are like a possessed black metal hybrid, but seems to work really well.

The album turns into something else part way through, with those black metal-like vocals making an appearance in fifth track Wardrums. This time with the addition of those haunting melodic vocals and the slow doom riffing, you've got the perfect recipe to join the coven!

This album is journey best not experienced alone. It's twists and turns may well drive you quietly insane those trance inducing riffs, only to bring you back to consciousness with those hauntingly good vocals that pierce the wall of sound. This is the sound of a band playing to their own beat, challenging the conventions of what a doom metal album should sound like.

Some of the melodies that are conjured in the riffs are really top draw, like at the start of Gloomy Sunday. The rumbling of the bass and the anchored quality of the drumming bring it all together. By last song (cassette only) Cataract, you are left alone with Darcy Nutt's siren like vocals, to contemplate what you have just witnessed. Uzala are and will be something special and the more people who take note of them, the more will be grabbed and hooked under their spell. This record is a true look at how subtly different elements can be brought together to create a quite spectacular body of work!

This record is being streamed in it's entirety via Uzala's bandcamp page, so please check it out -

Also, be sure to drop by Uzala's Facebook page at http://www.facebook.com/pages/UZALA and if you want to buy their record, you can buy digital copies from the bandcamp page above or you get vinyl copies (if there's any left) via At War With False Noise at www.atwarwithfalsenoise.com and you can pick up cassette version from Witchsermon at http://witchsermon.wordpress.com/.



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