Tuesday 11 January 2022

Varoshan - ...And Then The Rains Came

Labels: Elitbolaget

Formats: Tape/Digital

Release Date: 11 Jan 2022


1. The Crow

2. The Wrath

3. The Tyrant

4. Tyger Heart (Interlude)

5. The Message (feat. Riina Rinkinen)

6. The Snake

Today marks the release of the debut album from European sludge/hardcore band Varoshan. With members residing in Finland, Germany and the United Kingdom, being able to release an album during the current restrictions is no mean feat. ...And Then The Rains Came is available both on tape and digitally via Finnish label Elitbolaget. I've read that Varoshan can be compared to the likes of Tombs, Converge and Black Sabbath, so this should be quite a ride.

…And Then The Rains Came is initially very different to what I was expecting, given the bands that Varoshan is compared to. I suppose it’s best to leave comparisons at the door sometimes. That might sound like a negative way to begin a review, but it’s not meant to be as Varoshan’s take on metal is very captivating on opener ‘The Crow’. Heavy, groovy and melodic with vocals that are both extreme and approachable. It’s certainly an intriguing listen straight out of the gate.

That groove I was talking about lies well and truly with the guitar work of Anders Bomberg, backed up by bassist Matias Lofman’s low-end on ‘The Wrath’. This is what I had conjured up in my mind when imagining what Varoshan would sound like (although I know that sort of thing is impossible). The very strong percussion of Anders Tornqvist adds a ton of volume to the song, while Mark Howes roars over the top. Heck, there’s even the odd bit of Incubus-like funk going on. I guess that’s where Varoshan’s alternative side shows through.

So far so good then. This album really hits the spot if you’re looking for something meaty and riff-laden. ‘The Tyrant’ is much more reliant on the band’s low-end, as well as atmospherics and spoken-word samples to add to Varoshan’s already intense layers of sound. When they change things up and throw in some nice psychedelic riffs later on, it all gets a bit too much (in terms of how enjoyable it is!). The second half of the album begins with the interlude ‘Tyger Heart’. It breaks things up slightly but at the same time leads you nicely on.

What follows that interlude is ‘The Message’, which features additional vocals from Riina Rinkinen. Varoshan’s sound here takes a slightly slower turn, at least for a time with the instrumentation definitely becoming more doom-like. The addition of Riina’s clean tones give the song a much greater occult feel, even when up next to Mark’s harsher vocals. This is a side that I like very much.

It’s left to ‘The Snake’, the album’s longest song, to wind it’s way to a final conclusion. It’s a mix of the doom of ‘The Message’ and the alternative elements from earlier on in the album. It’s a pretty calming way to close things out and shows the versatility of all members of Varoshan. All of the above mentioned sub-genres are gathered together to create a really solid metal album. One that has it’s own personality and poise. Great job!

You can stream the full album and purchase it both digitally or on tape (or both!) below:-

Varoshan - https://www.facebook.com/varoshandoom

Elitbolaget - https://www.facebook.com/Elitbolaget

No comments:

Post a Comment