Crank this to 9.1 of 11
Genre: Doom, Sludge, Hardcore
Sounds Like: Soilent Green, Eyehategod
The Dutch quintet Herder have something very special in their second full-length release Gods. Doom metal and hardcore fans will find immediate gratification out of this very diverse and intelligent album. Gods is the bands first full length album following up their solid EP entitled Doomed with new singer Che Snelting.
Herder delivers a very grass roots sludge metal sound with relentless gritty vocals, but also feature some very well thought out harmonies and post-rock infused guitar licks. The album covers themes of the occult and deities exploring and questioning the validity of religion. An eclectic dismal take on religion the evil paths people can take. Herder's themes appear vehemently against organized religion.
1. Genesis 329 (3:30)
2. Betrayer, Deceiver (5:32)
3. Gods (3:06)
4. Pythia (5:14)
5. Stab (3:07)
6. Asylums of the Forgotten (7:00)
7. Maelstrom (2:22)
8. FOAD II (3:31)
9. Blood From Life (6:39)
10. Soul Harvester (6:51)
TOTAL RUNNING TIME = 46:52
The first track is an instrumental featuring the prophetic prose of Matthew McConaughey, an excerpt from the great series True Detective (we highly recommend you pick this series up as well). "Betrayer, Deceiver" follows with some terrific dark prodding grooves. We love the contrast of the swirling post-rock high pierced guitar. Beautiful melodies that really cause the listener to pause. Its like the taste of salt and sugar very complimentary. The title track "Gods" is an intense frenzy of hardcore heaviness and one of the faster cuts on the album.
"Pythia" is a mellower track with some very deep bass that accompanies the grinding guitar. Various parts sound like a Didgeridoo is in full effect. Very powerful moments reminding us somewhat of Sepultura's Roots. “Asylums of the Forgotten” is a wild track spanning some 7 minutes of horror and intrigue. Contrast that with the short concise hardcore melodies in "Maelstrom" a bit more akin to the bands original works. Track 8 FOAD II continues on the hardcore vein and is a little less discrete than other tracks. "Fuck-you fuck-you fuck-you" bellows Che. The track then infuses some post-rock melodic guitar all set the the backdrop of the brooding Crowbaresque rhythms. This is a very unique and cool track. The last track 'Soul Harvester' is about as sludgy as you can get and at a about the three minute mark really takes a unique turn. We hear influences of ISIS and some of the most unique guitar-work and feedback we have heard in a long-time. Tremendous thought and effort fueling a superb ending. These Dutchmen a very gifted and have quite the vision.
Gods personifies how deep and elaborate heavy sludge metal can get. Herder have put much detail into their latest album providing the listener with many layers of sound. The album pushes the limits of sludge metal infusing both hardcore and post-rock influences. We are impressed enough to give this one the coveted Editor's Pick. Well done.