Label: Rotting Throne Records
Origin: United Kingdom
If the motto of a band is ‘Beards. Metal. Fuck You’ , you know that this is something you want to play loud for a bit. The omnious reference to a Norse Ragnarok added to that makes it even sound more bad ass and that is pretty much the deal with this debut record by United Kingdom sludge metal brawlers Allfather. Can I add to my vote of sympathy that most of their Facebook timeline is filled with shout outs to other bands? That makes you even more of a cool band to me.
The four piece from Rochester have recorded their album in Son of Suns Studio of Jason Frye and Charlie Creese’s Magpie Studios. The mastering of the first five tracks was done by Brad Boatright at Audiosiege (known from Nails, Yob, Sleep etc.), so that’s bound to be good!
Opener ‘Raskolnikov’ shows instantly, that there’s space for the literary and complex with an obvious reference to the work of Dostojevski (Crime and Punishment) with a lyric that demonstrates the shizmatic nature of the protagonist Raskolnikov in a ranted monologue. Surrounding that is the pummeling rhythm section, not unlike some of the Bolt Thrower tank-track grooves. The vocals sound muddled and boiling up in anger. The whole sound is like an eruption.
If that isn’t enough to already be impressed by the group, you’ll be blown away by Sabbathy riffs and a punch to the jaw on ‘The Bloody Noose’ (wait for that rif for like 4 mins). The sound is not complex or unnecessarily frantic, but just good, groovy doom with an interesting amount of that old fashioned bluesy guitar sounds. Not that the band does anything simplistic, it’s just the sense of knowing what is enough for a good track I think.
A bit of biblical referencing on ‘Death, and Hell Followed With Him’ (Revelations 6:8) is also showing that more thought out element in the music. Clocking an epic 11+ minutes, this is the summit of the album (there’s a bonus track too) where Allfather takes the time to build up properly. There’s always something cathartic to their music and lyrics. Gritty, dirty and full of fat, greasy grooves, the band is like being dragged through the mud and feeling cleaner for it afterwards. And that goes on and on.