Om, YOB, Electric Wizard
Believe us we get the whole doom metal sludge rock thing. We understand the simplicity in utilizing the droning 3 bass chords. We get the minimalistic approach and dark artistry that some key bands have been blessed with. Our lives have been enhanced by spending many hours listening to the simplistic beauty and ominous doom metal of genre leaders Sleep, Om and Electric Wizard.
Please welcome Queen Elephantine and their 4th album Scarab. The 50-minute album contains the following tracks:
Veil (8:12) - 7
Crone (18:16) - 5
Snake (10:44) - 3
Clear Light of the Unborn (13:05) - 2
We have had Queen Elephantine in our rotation for quite some time hoping that the lengthy cuts would eventually make sense and provide some listening pleasure. Unfortunately, no such luck. The Hong Kong meets Brooklyn doom explorers have failed to impress us on Scarab and to be honest have no desire to peruse the other three albums. The band features two drummers along with lead guitarist Indrayudh Shome from Hong Kong.
In an nutshell, Scarab is powered by the opening track "Veil" and falls woefully flat thereafter. "Veil" is a good doom metal song and will keep your interest. It contains a variety of layers and begins to paint some imagery and focus. The evil monotone vocals provide some flavor and round out the track. We find several change-ups on this track as well. Now enter "Crone" and the downward spiral of quality ensues. The last two cuts, "Snake" and "Clear Light of the Unborn" are almost unbearable and coma inducing. Collectively 23 minutes of filler droning with very little change-ups or inflection. We find it problematic when you keep saying to yourself (even though you are not a musician)... "shit, I can do this".
Doom metal is all about mood setting and building mystique and different layers. It requires patience and an ear for the full body of work. Unfortunately the only mood that Scarab provides is that of boredom. Doom metal fans should steer clear of this album. Turn to the likes of YOB or Sleep for your sludge listening pleasures. 8/19/2014
Standout Tracks: Veil