Before Conan became the next big thing in volume-shattering sludge, they collaborated with their countrymen Slomatics on this six-song split. First released in 2011, this record was recently reissued on vinyl by Black Bow Records. I dunno guy, but 180-gram might not be heavy enough…
Conan takes three tracks on Side A, although the second one is a one-minute, spoken-word interlude. Things get off to a gloomy start with “Retaliator,” a seven-minute sludgy knuckle-dragger, this one taps into their soon-to-be-signature wall of heavy fuzz. We do get a brief, mellower passage past the three-minute mark, with pounding percussion featuring prominently, but it’s not long before they dive back into another crunchy sludge attack.
“Older Than Earth” is an 11-minute epic that incorporates some horror-soundtrack elements alongside its super-slow-mo doom riffs. In fact, this one relies more on eerie atmosphere at times than sheer sonic heaviness—although that’s not to say that certain passages don’t still pack a rather weighty wallop.
Slomatics take over on Side B with three songs in the 5-7 minute range. They start off with the longest song, “Lose the Five,” which offers an Electric Wizard style downtuned doom riff along with airy, echoing vocals, plenty of headbangable drumbeats and even a bit of cowbell. “Black Blizzard” serves up some more downtuned despondency, with a crunchy riff right outta Conan’s playbook. “Mount Ventoux” leans a little more toward post-sludge with the ominous tones and bullhorn vocals, but either way you slice it, it’s a pretty doomy vegetable.
Pre-orders are available at: www.blackbowrecords.com