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all glory to the hypnotoad - 91%

caspian, September 1st, 2010

Listening to this makes me think that I really oughta revisit Earth 2. I wasn't down with that album when I first head it, but this is some rad shit. It's not drone but definitely something closely related (have a habit of calling it hypnodoom, myself), and it's still one of the finest releases in the sub-sub genre/niche that it's in.

Earth rely on a very simple premise here, which I will summarise as 'fuzzy guitar play riff lots times'. It's a very solid premise and some stoned as hell vocals on Revenge Pt 2 aside they do their best to hold onto it. Helps that the riffs are completely radtastic. "Drone doom" is often a genre that has little in the way of the latter, but man, that huge opening riff on the first track, doomy as shit bro. Awesome stuff, it's like someone took a random sabbath riff, slowed it way down and then just looped the everloving hell out of it; the fact that it segues into another sweet riff (then another one!) just makes it even better. Three riffs in a song! Hell yeah. Dark Angel, take notes.

I like how the drums on here are fake as hell, and although they are sort of necessary, you can definitely see that Carlson and whoever else was in the band had a pretty clear idea of what they wanted to do next. A preview of said "next" is in the fantastic closer, "Ouroboros is Broken", one of the best drone/doom songs ever released.

It's something that I'm sure most dudes in particularly slow doom bands have done from time to time- hit some fine green (or cheap green, for the students) and just jammed on one riff over and over again, until the high wears off or until things get too awesome to continue. I've done it with a friend for three hours at one point, and I'm sure Earth's original vision of Ouroboros was of a similarly epic length, but luckily here it's just 18 odd minutes of sweet riff and sweet leaf. It is freakin rad though, a real nice doomy thang, some gongs and that mechanical percussion creaking away, until we're left with the final few bars of the riff just repeating over and over again while some synths drone away in the background. Just completely numbs your head... a truly brilliant jam, for sure! The atmosphere has this strange mix between eastern mysticism and that whole desolate desert thing that Earth explored later on; just an exotic and amazing track all round.

I'd rec this to dudes looking to get into drone/doom, definitely, as aside from it being completely fantastic it's also relatively short, being an EP an' all, although Ouroboros is a bit of an inaccessible beast, being 18 minutes of one riff. Well worth getting anyway, definitely don't delay on this if you like weed and/or you're a big fan of real slow, hypnotic shit.