Underground Sludge


Sludge metal – I have an odd fondness for it, and it is for this reason and this reason alone that I have trawled through the bowels of bandcamp to bring you an assortment of underground/unsigned/unknown bands and their sludgy stylings.

I’d also just like to mention that all of these bands and their EPs were found by going to bandcamp and simply typing the word ‘sludge’ into their search bar.

Let’s see what the world of sludge has to offer.

Sweet Daisy – Sludge

1996 – Independent

Sludge/ Metal

sweet daisy - sludge

The riffs are fantastically slow and grinding and the bass is affects physically with every single chug: really powerful stuff. It’s just a shame that the vocals are so weak.

Swinging between an attempt at crushing doom heaviness and a strange semi-orchestral goth whine and failing horribly at both, the vocals on this really drag down this release. There’s just no energy in them at all, and when I’m listening to sludge, I expect to have at least a little bit of mania. If you take the punk elements away from sludge what are you left with? Not a lot, that’s what.

I think, however, the thing that ruins this one is the fact that the opening track alone runs on for ten minutes plus, which is just a great way to set everything up for boredom. Tracks that long with music this simple unavoidably become repetitive and dull, and by halfway through Long I Thought I was drifting out of this four track EP.

Still though, those grinding guitar riffs really were something.

RATING: D+

Get The EP Here: http://sludge.bandcamp.com/album/sweet-daisy


EP – Grass

2010 – Independent

Sludge/ Metal/ Ambient/ Prog

grass EP

Assuming the first cut’s a joke (not really sludge at all, more of an extended ambient guitar wank) this one’s a crushing piece of sheer unwashed brutality.

It thumps, it crashes, it grinds, and it invades your pores until you reek. It’s not in any way ground-breaking or original, but these guys play the standards well. Perfect mixture of drawn out gloom and skull-bashing hardcore.

My qualms lie in the fact that too often they think in terms of prog. Ugh. Prog.

RATING: C-

Get The EP Here: http://sludgegrass.bandcamp.com/album/ep


Buzzard – Sludgebucket

2013 – Independent

Sludge/ Metal/ Experimental

buzzard sludgbucket

Sludgbucket know how to make a racket. Each cut on this seven track is cacophonous, and in a good way. I mean, the way a track like Fooled At Birth brings in so many layers slimy noise is really something to behold, and the jarring change-ups of Wrath Of The Wrong is exactly where the sludge scene is at.

More bands should be taking their lead from these Oakland boys and realizing that noise is not a mere necessity, but an art-form.

It’s not all grime and noise, however. Sludgebucket seem to be writing their tunes with a rare sense of heavy metal intelligence that moves beyond fast-playing, technical skill, and the odd dash of the devil’s tritone. There’s no sense of art-school intelligentsia, but it’s not a load of dumb punk either, instead there’s some kind of simplistic complexity on Buzzard that makes it incredibly intriguing.

Downsides are that the levelling is off the whole way through, which means that their intricate grotesque of a soundscape doesn’t have the force it could. I would like the hear what these guys would do with a studio budget, but then again who needs production values?

Sidenote: What the hell is a didgeridoo doing on here?

RATING: B

Get The EP Here: http://sludgebucket.bandcamp.com/


Chapter 1 – Thorn

2012 – Independent

Sludge/ Metal/ Doom

thorn

If you like listening to feedback and white noise this might be the EP for you.

If you like music, however, I can’t say that I’d recommend it.

Just four tracks of unmitigated inability to play being passed off as enraged metal sincerity.

RATING: F

Get The EP Here: http://thornsludge.bandcamp.com/


A Megadose Of Unusual Gain Structures – Sludgethrone

2012 – Independent

Sludge/ Metal/ Experimental

sludgethrone

That vocal effect might have been cool if I could actually hear the vocals.

The riffs might have been engaging if they weren’t all fudged together into an almost unlistenable bass murmur.

Primarily, it’s a massive failure on the production front, but after straining my ears through all three tracks and getting a brief glimpse of the band’s song-writing abilities it might have been better that I couldn’t hear anything.

RATING: F

Get The EP Here: http://sludgethrone.bandcamp.com/

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3 thoughts on “Underground Sludge

  1. Pingback: Adventures In Bandcamp: Vol V (Catfish/ Scotty Lingelbach/ Chapters) | Lachlan J. Faces The Music

  2. Pingback: Adventures In Bandcamp: Vol. VIII (The You And What Army Faction/ Worthless Waste/ Curmudgeon) | Lachlan J. Faces The Music

  3. Pingback: Adventures In Bandcamp: Vol. IX (Elliot Sphinx/ Unquiet/ The Plywood Staircases) | Lachlan J. Faces The Music

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