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Definitely My Cup of Tea - 88%

Roffle_the_Thrashard, October 27th, 2015

This doom/sludge metal group of Huddersfield, in the good ol' UK has many of the visuals (or should I say, "stereotypes") that I associate with these two metal genres. You know what I mean. Goats, bones and skulls, pentagrams, and other satanic imagery. So already, one would assume that Wort are yet another basic, entry level sludge metal band, but you'd be wrong if you made that assumption, for this band is the poster child for a doom/sludge metal group's style, and how one should sound.

The best aspect of this EP is the wonderfully evil aura that wafts off of it. It can be described as the same goose bump inducing evil feeling that you receive when listening to songs like "Sinister" by Pentagram. It's that feeling you get that makes you become fully immersed into listening to "Tea" while trying to scream its inaudible vocals/lyrics, and you realize that you were unknowingly screaming the song to your classmates in the middle of a lecture at your local high school. You just can't help it. The groove is simply too entrancing. This is essentially a round-about manner of saying that this EP has some catchy material that will scratch that itch of evil that you need satisfied so badly.

This atmosphere is the result of the great set of musical notes that Wort employs in their riffs, and it was refreshing to hear some very imaginative licks and melodies thrown to the elephant sized drum patterns. There was always an interesting mixture of blues scales and minor scales that were especially present in "The Swine Herd" and "Tea." It creates a sort of contrast of brutal simplicity and fluid complexity. There are a few riffs here and there that one might say "I've heard that before" to, but Wort has added just the right amount of familiar sounding melodies into Not Your Cup of Tea. We listen to other bands hoping that they'll sound like other groups we like, so therefore, this worked just fine.

Although Not Your Cup of Tea's production was of high standard, I didn't like the way that Mike Collins' vocals were put into the mix of this release. They seem to float almost out of sight from the noisy, ghastly apparition that is the instrumental part of Wort's sound. If one can imagine the mixing of the vocals in Sunsmasher's Hell​/​Noise​/​Church, then you can get a good idea of the mix here: powerful, yet almost wispy and ambient-like. It's not something that I am attracted to when it comes to vocals in sludge or doom metal. I also usually tend to back off from slicker sounding release by bands of these sub-genres, but something seemed to be done right regarding this EP. The fantastic D.I.Y vibe of doom/sludge metal was preserved by professional and in-depth production that hit the nail on the head with these four tracks.

From its goat-headed top to cloven-hoofed bottom, this unholy blaze of doom/sludge fire is one that will please almost any listener. Entrancing riff after entrancing riff will leave worshiping at the altar of Wort's amazing sound. There is very little missing from these four songs, and guitar solos would have been a wonderful addition to the overall resume of Wort's sound, and I can hear them in my head already. Combine that with some slightly off-putting vocals that were hard to understand, and you've got some serious problems on your hands. However, Not Your Cup of Tea's entertaining melodies, samples, and amazing aura of evil will always overshadow the cons. So sit back with your cup of tea, and take a listen to this.