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For the dude that doesn't want to hit a frat kegger every night; for the bro that would prefer to brood over a brew instead of hang with the crew once in a while: Aldebaran.
This is still pretty heavy and dark, but I also find this relaxing as taking a shit in your own toilet. Perhaps it's because I haven't heard any of this plodding, really slow droney stoner/funeral stuff for a very long time, but yeah, sitting back, watching the storm clouds roll in on over the desert on my little front porch, the relatively warm, humid westerlies rolling in, and just chilling with some slow, heavy riffs that just plod around like big, vaguely malevolent sauropod.. man, so rad. Awesome times.
There's a big "southern" influence in here, can't really call it country but you'd know it if you heard it. Eagle Twin, Earth, that sort of stuff. Pillars of Geph, which starts off with a very cool Lovecraft sample, is the best example of this. The lyrics have plenty of ominous imagery, and I'm thinking that this is definitely meant to be some truly grim stuff, but it doesn't really comes across as that. Just chilled doomy riffs repeating over and over again while the skies get darker and the thunder gets audible. The spacious, 'less distorted than you'd think' production helps a bunch too. I think the highlight for me is the super slowdown that happens in "slightless and silent", just a simple two chord grind (super tight musicianship, keeping it this together at this tempo) that goes on for ages and just envelopes you. "Abound in cosmic chaos harsh astral winds blow " Feeling you, bro.
Aldebaran- a sweet ass band name for a sweet ass band. Highly recommended for all bros of the slow.
Over the years I've learned to stray from questions like "crikey, where'd these guys come from?!" when referring to drone/funeral doom acts such as Portland's Aldebaran; primarily because less than zero percent of the population could give a shit whether a trio of stoners converged somewhere in life and produced a three track album in a marathon 43 minutes, let alone report it.
While the prospect of sitting through three tracks (two of which clock in at nearly 16 and 20 minutes respectively) may seem as appetizing to most as peeling one's toenails off with a carrot knife, given a listen or two, you'll find your ass and everything in between pushed up and out your smarmy piehole by the sheer heaviness of this release. Imagine strapping two Cyclone subwoofers to your head with duct tape and stepping into NASA's anti-gravity chamber as the dumbass intern spills java all over the control panel, somehow causing a reverse effect (yes, I realize how cartoonishly retarded that sounds, but it was either that metaphor or a Dragonball Z reference, so fuck you). That's how heavy this goddamn album is.
What struck me the most about this album is the lack of feedback that generally conjoins chords in this style. What we end up with is a far more musical, death metal inspired form of funeral doom, one that I assume will reinvigorate the interest of doom-junkies in the US who grew tired of reverb-laden drone back when Aldebaran were just a twinkle in its mother's eye.
Each track is purposefully built on a crippling underbelly, and allows the instruments to speak for themselves through slow, methodical build-ups and slight tempo changes whenever absolutely necessary. The vocals are perfect for this style, and while guttural, retain clarity throughout the release, especially evident in the absolutely soul-squishing Pillars Of Geph. My sole gripe with Dwellers In Twilight is the sample introducing the aforementioned track, which I believe would have sat far prettier at the head of the introductory track... as I type this however, I'm beginning to realize how retarded I sound bitching about something that petty. No gripes, then.
If the prospect of bowel-shiftingly heavy doom metal suits your fancy, this album's an absolute necessity. If not, please grow some balls and listen to Winter, ya' pansy. Strongly reccomended.
The 'Dwellers In Twilight' part, not so much the 'get testies' part.
Aldebaran is one of those bands which are, for some reason, very much unknown yet release music which is undeniably awesome in every sense of the word. Their first full-length album, Dwellers in Twilight, follows the trend that Aldebaran has of releasing very consistent, impressive and oppressive doom metal.
This album contains three tracks, clocking in at a little over 43 minutes total, of very heavy, very dark and very slow doom metal. Shades of funeral doom abound here, with the band relying heavily on instrument-orchestrated atmospheres and plodding pace that crush the life out of the listener. Repetition is an integral part of Aldebaran's approach on this album, with many riffs and patterns repeated for minutes at a time. But it isn't boring at all, and this is where the entire atmospheric aspect of the album shines - no matter how long a song goes on for, when it
ends you just wish it would have just an extra five minutes more so you can immerse yourself in it for just a bit longer and dig deeper into the amazing ideas and nuances that abound. And the clarity of the production is a surprise - Aldebaran seems take the "clean" route here, not saturating everything in reverb or anything like that. Interestingly enough, the production job is a bonus, as by conveying all of their ideas across with the utmost clarity the music sounds just that little bit more menacing and not a note or word uttered is lost upon the listener.
The vocalist is superb. There are two vocal approaches here, both of which are used very effectively. Firstly, we have the death growl approach, which features prominently and usually appears when the music is at its slowest. While they're very easy to understand, they add more to the music than just a way by which the band can convey their lyrics across to the reader - they're an instrument in their own right, and they ooze hopelessness and fury at the same time. The second approach, which is reserved mainly for when the band breaks into a relatively faster or more powerful section, is a high sort of hardcore scream that many of these sludge/doom bands are well known for. Both are used immaculately, and even when they're used together with one running over the other it sounds menacing, unlike other bands which use such an approach (such as, say, Deicide). The lyrics are heavily influenced by literature and Lovecraft (just listen to the clip at the start of "Pillars of Geph"), and are just as dark, delightful and multi-faceted as the music itself.
As an unimportant but interesting side-note, the album art is excellent too. Especially the image on the back which also holds the track listing. It is a pretty neat synopsis of the music that this album holds.
But anyway, I'll sum things up now. This release is a wonderful and worthy addition to the realm of doom metal, and if you have any interest in the genre whatsoever, this album is highly recommended. You won't be disappointed in the slightest.