“You are about to experience one of the strangest meetings ever convened — a joining of […] the most unusual people on Earth! Sit quietly in the shadows of this clandestine conference and observe it well! For from it shall soon be born … The DOOM PATROL” – Arnold Drake
Welcome to the Doom Charts, representing some of the finest sites, podcasts and bands in the stoner and doom metal underground! Each participant lists their favorite new stoner / sludge / doom albums and the results are compiled into the chart below. This is a one-stop shop for the best new albums in the world.
But first … The Roll Call – A.S. Van Dorston (Fast n’ Bulbous); Bill Goodman (The Evil Engineer); Billy Goate (Doomed & Stoned); Bucky Brown (The Ripple Effect); Cam Crichton (Motherslug); Clint (Hand of Doom Radio); Doktor420 (Stoner HiVe); Double A Doom (The Sludgelord); Gram Pola (Dirty Denim); Ian Gerber (WTF is Stoner Rock?); Joop Konraad (Stoner HiVe); LK Ultra (You May Be Dead & Dreaming); Lyk (Phantasmagoria); Melissa (Doomed & Stoned); Mr. Fuzz (More Fuzz); Pat Harrington (The Electric Beard of Doom); Paul Rote (Bandcamp); Skip (Ride With the Devil); Soggy Bob (Soggy Bog of Doom); Steve Howe (The Sludgelord); Steve Miller (Vertical Chamber Apparatus); Tony Maim (Stoner HiVe); Ulla Roschat (Wicked Lady)
25. CHERRY CHOKE – ‘Raising the Waters’
This British group serves up true 70’s rock on their new record, laidback and hard edged. Buy.
24. WINDHAND / SALEM’S POT split
This two-song EP came out months ago but it has resonated enough to earn its place here. Two of the heaviest bands in the universe joining forces. Consume.
23. HOLY SERPENT – ‘Shroom Doom’
This 5-song EP isn’t out until May, but already its popularity is soaring. Melbourne’s Holy Serpent weaves incredibly heavy doom with melodic vocals. Stay Asleep.
22. SPIDERGAWD – ‘II’
This Norwegian band looks at stoner rock through the other side of the funhouse mirror. This is strange but good stuff. Obey.
21. RIFFLORD – ‘26 Mean & Heavy’
With a name like that you better bring the ruckus. Fortunately they do and their efforts have gotten this South Dakota band signed to STB Records. Submit.
20. MISTY GREY – ‘Grey Mist’
This Spanish doom band is not to everyone’s taste, but they are compared to Pentagram and this Shadow Kingdom EP has been hailed a future classic. Watch TV.
19. HOBO MAGIC – s/t
This hard rockin’ Brisbane trio’s album has been out half a year but it can still set fire to those with loose hanging morals and then teach them a thing or two. Conform.
18. MONOLORD – ‘Vænir’
This album is already divisive but it appears on our chart long before it appears on shelves. The verdict is still out but this Swedish trio is riding the wave. No Thought.
17. CHIEFS – ‘Tomorrow’s Over’
These stoner rock veterans from L.A. just served their latest dish less than a week ago and already it’s all over the place. Gonna need a bigger napkin. Do Not Question Authority.
16. THE DEVIL & THE ALMIGHTY BLUES – s/t
Much like the name implies this Norwegian band plays a dark brand of down-home blews. Marry and Reproduce.
15. BURNING SAVIOURS – ‘Unholy Tales from the North’
Dark Swedish retro doom from Transubstans Records. This is the band’s fifth full-length record counting ‘Boken Om Förbannelsen’ and they only get better and darker with age. Sleep.
14. ZQKMDGZ – ‘Dimension Plaza’
Pretty unique stuff here, this German band plays spaced-out doom with mega-galactic sized riffs. Experimental but still highly accessible. Work 8 Hours.
13. IN THE COMPANY OF SERPENTS – ‘Merging in Light’
Released in late December this was arguably the best E.P. of last year. Three solid tracks of killer sludge metal from this Denver duo. Sleep 8 Hours.
12. DÖ – ‘Den’
Another killer sludge / doom EP, this one by Finnish trio Dö. These four songs are often slow, always heavy and never boring. Play 8 Hours.
11. SATURNDUST – s/t
This up-and-coming Brazilian band’s expansive debut album is full of monolithic riffs and spacey atmospheres. Obey.
10. DOOMRAISER – ‘Reverse’
Italian doom giants return with what is arguably their most accomplished album to date. The verdict is in, it’s a winner. Submit.
9. BLACK SMOKE DRAGON – ‘Earth Have Jaiah’
This is arguably the most surprising entry on this list, but well-earned. This Spanish quartet seamlessly blends horror with stoner metal. Watch TV.
8. MIDNIGHT GHOST TRAIN – ‘Cold Was the Ground’
Currently in Europe where this album was just released, this Kansas trio seems more focused than ever. You can find ‘Cold Was the Ground’ on Napalm Records. Conform.
7. RUBY THE HATCHET – ‘Valley of the Snake’
This Philly quartet plays a smooth brand of psychedelic stoner rock. Their second album is blessed with irresistible melodies. No Independent Thought.
6. BLACK PUSSY – ‘Magic Mustache’
These Portland pussies have a rough-around-the-edges stoner pop sound that always reminds me of ‘Exile on Mainstreet’ era Stones. Consume.
-above entries written by LK Ultra (You May Be Dead & Dreaming)
5. TORCHE – ‘Restarter’
Torche have returned with their latest effort, “Restarter”. Matching an expansive overall sound with thick and crushing riffs is just an everyday thing for them, but this latest release proves they’ll always be some of the best at it. Blasting through ten tracks of thundering sludge metal with a flair for the progressive in what seems like no time. Conform.
-Skip (Ride With the Devil)
4. SHEPHERD – ‘Stereolithic Riffalocalypse’
Shepherd’s debut album – Stereolithic Riffalocalypse – is one of the best debut albums released in 2015. It’s already gaining some major buzz within the Sludge/Stoner Metal world. What’s not to love about it? ‘Stereolithic Riffalocalypse’ plays out like a weird and wonderful hybrid of Noise, Grunge, Stoner, Doom and Sludge Metal riffs. Shepherd feel they were brought up in the legendary Seattle Grunge scene instead of coming from India. From the opening seconds of Snake Pit you know you’re in for a heavy and wild time. Shepherd has combined classic Melvins style humour with hard-hitting riffs. Look at the song titles – “Turdspeak”, “Black Cock of Armageddon”. Shepherd don’t disappoint here. They’ve released a stunning debut that plays out like a warning shot to the world of Sludge/Stoner Metal that a truly great band has arrived. Start looking over your shoulders as Shepherd is coming for you all. Reproduce.
-Steve Howe (The Sludgelord)
3. BROTHERS OF THE SONIC CLOTH – s/t
‘Brothers of the Sonic Cloth’ is sonic Ragnarök—a devastatingly heavy unfolding of events that is oftentimes cinematic in scope. Whether the music is actively destructive or hinting at the windswept desolation of a fallen empire it’s hard not to imagine Surtr raining down upon the gods and bringing forth the fire that engulfs the Earth. If this is the end result of waiting six years, I will gladly wait another six for the next installment. Submit.
-Steve Miller (Vertical Chamber Apparatus)
2. ACID KING – ‘Middle of Nowhere, Center of Everywhere’
Acid King return with probably their most expansive offering yet. Like riding a motorbike on Quaaludes, it has an acid-drenched feeling that things are slowly slipping out of control while the heaviness just helps to propel the trip along nicely. Lori’s vocals, as always, resemble a drug-fuelled succubus luring you to your doom – but what a way to go! This is not meant to be a “heavier than thou” listening experience nor is it a descent into total misery. This is Stoner, Fuzz-laden Doom Blues with a palpable feeling of tripped out vibes that is rarely heard these days. The distorted bass matches the guitar riffs and welds together into a sonic wall of oppressive grooves that help pin down the individual instruments as they wander through the low end of crushing frequencies that are turning your brains into mush. This should be the slab of excellence that brings Acid King back into their well-deserved place at the top of the underground swamp. Stay Asleep.
-Tony Maim (Stoner HiVe)
1. ELDER – ‘Lore’
Elder have crafted a masterpiece of heavy progressive metal constructed with subtle vocal wails, celestial solos, and intricately distorted fuzz. The Mastodonian guitar noodles are orchestrated to the tone of a rocket ship launching from the bowels of the deep blue sea. Imagine Baroness on ecstasy trying to riff their way into a Pink Floyd music video. The more I listen, the harder it is to argue that Lore may have already claimed Album of the Year for 2015. This Is Your God.
-Bucky Brown (The Ripple Effect)