Album review: Deadsmoke- Mountain Legacy

IMG_0703Deadsmoke – Mountain Legacy

Release date: 29th September

Label: Heavy Psych Sounds

Their name derives from the idea that “your soul is already burned, the smoke is what remains”. Welcoming you to their world with their sophomore album, the band members are Maurice on drums, Matteo on guitar and Gianmania on bass. Together they form the trifecta for their self-described “Italian doom sludge” band. Originating from northern Italy, they may have been active for only 2 years, but some would say that their sound has evolved more than some bands do in a decade. Along the way, they’ve lost all of their previous melodic influence and they’re now focused on dark monolithic cadences.

They take inspiration from nature, and specifically mountains, in particular the isolation you may feel, and the pure rawness of it. They feel that it’s in their DNA and therefore a part of them.

It is an 8 track album- “Endless Cave”, “Hiss of the witch”, “Emperor of shame”, “Wolfcurse”,”Forest of the damned” and ending with “Mountain Legacy”.

The first song on the album is “Malevolent Path”. It’s the shortest song on the album at just over a minute. It is fairly repetitive and creates a creepy atmosphere, however it gives a good indication of what the album is going to contain- Haunting riffs galore.

“Hiss of the witch” is a standout. However, lasting just under 8 minutes it is long drawn out. The screaming vocals in the song are spooky, It’s haunting and has a spiritual quality. The drum beat almost mimics a heartbeat, furthering the experience.

The intro reminiscent of a clock in the introduction of “Wolfcurse” together with the hammering beat and almost expertly drowned out vocals, plus hypnotic sounds created from the amplifiers make it something special.

“Mountain Legacy” deserves a special mention. The almost animalistic laugh at the start is undoubtably a unique way of introducing a song. The monolithic riffs with the characteristic drum beat that Deadsmoke have become known for are successful. It contains the most vocals, particularly in the chorus. However, at times there is too much going on, and becomes a cacophony of sound. Instead of having an accent piece, such as really heavy monolithic riffs, they have vocals, plus hammering drums all in unison. It doesn’t make for comfortable listening, especially with the wave after wave of riffs in the ending.

All in all “Mountain legacy” is an interesting bag. It’s certainly a unique sound, however at times is long drawn out and repetitive. It certainly isn’t a mainstream album and will be unlikely to get much airplay. However all may not be lost. For fans of the monolithic genre this will be a thought provoking choice. The technicality of this album, such as the riffs may well impress, and the atmospheric, haunting vocals featuring in “Hiss of the witch” and the wolf in the background in “Wolfcurse”, would serve well in a horror film.

Their sound is constantly in evolution, although they do try to keep their distinguishing characteristics. They would be interesting to see live and to follow to see how they evolve in the future. Watch this space!

Rating: 5/10
Recommended track: “Hiss of the witch”

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