The Doom Charts For January 2017

“It was a bright cold day in January, and the clocks were striking thirteen…”  ~ George Orwell

The year has begun! A month has passed. And we have been treated to at least or an almost cool hundred of new releases in the heavy genre. But ofcourse some of those December releases are still on heavy rotation or getting rediscovered. Cause we all know the December month is way too hectic to really get groovy with those damn fine albums. Well, rest assured, a lot of them are present in this first Doom Chart of 2017.

Welcome to Doom Charts, representing some of the finest bloggers, journalists, radio and podcasters and album reviewers from the doom-stoner underground around the globe. Each month, our critics submit their picks for the best new doom-sludge metal and stoner-psychedelic rock albums. The results are compiled and tabulated into the chart below. This is a one-stop shop for the best new albums in the world

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25. MOTHERSHIP – HIGH STRANGENESS

Mothership‘s High Strangeness official release on March 17th may launch this Dallas, Texas trio from their Earth-hovering orbit right to the outer limits. Judge Smith and the Juett brothers’ third full-length album presents a seasoned sound, solid songwriting and a noticeable confidence in Kyle’s vocals that may just change the course of the Ship’s trip. ~ Leanne Ridgeway (Doomed & Stoned)

GET IT HERE

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24. JOHN GARCIA – THE COYOTE WHO SPOKE IN TONGUES

An acoustic album by the voice of the desert. A moniker that is his, even though he himself is reluctant to view himself as such. But if any album shows his vocal ability, it is this one. It also shows that Kyuss songs like Green Machine, Gardenia and El Rodeo are amazing songs and still stand tall when played acoustically. I for one loved Her Bullets Energy from his earlier solo album and am thus and therefor also smitten with this one! ~ Joop Konraad (Stoner HiVe)

GET IT HERE

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23. THE OSSUARY – POST MORTEM BLUES

Italian Blues/Doom Rockers – The Ossuary debut album – Post Mortem Blues – is flowing with classic seventies Doom Metal swagger and traditional Heavy Metal sounds. The vocals are steeped between NWOBHM style delivery and the more familiar Doomier moments. The Ossuary adds moments of Psychedelic Rock that gives their music a raw edge. Opening track – Black Curse – is a bleak affair with lead vocalist Stefano offering an almost creepy and OTT operatic performance. It’s a cool idea as his vocals give extra weight to this album. Post Mortem Blues is a well-crafted debut album and offers a different perspective within the Doom Metal scene. The album has a classical and theatrical feel with the gloomy psychedelic moments appearing on the album. The Ossuary is a band well versed in both classic doom metal and traditional heavy metal riffs. Post Mortem Blues offers the perfect balance between the two different sounds but still showing a few hidden surprises along the way. ~ Steve Howe (Outlaws of The Sun)

GET IT HERE

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22. RED MESA/BLUE SNAGGLETOOTH – SECOND COMING OF HEAVY, CHAPTER FOUR

Red Mesa kick “Chapter Four” off with four songs of spine tingling desert/stoner rock blended with touches of psych and classic/hard rock crunch. Blue Snaggletooth hit a more traditional stoner groove with their three offerings albeit spliced with a touch of bluesy proto-metal grittiness.Two bands, similar in some respects, different in others but both with a one mission…. to melt your face off with the power of their grooves. ~ Frazer Jones (Desert Psychlist)

GET IT HERE

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21. DOUBLE HORSE – DOUBLE HORSE

Spanish Doom Psych that is raw and immediate. Rumbling bottom end jostles with Iommi type riffs that live in a fetid swamp of Lovecraft lyrics and atmosphere. Relentless tunes are order of the day here and with this self released debut, I can see a lot of love coming their way. ~ Tony Maim (Stoner HiVe & Black Insect Laughter)

GET IT HERE

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20. DEATH ALLEY – LIVE AT ROADBURN

What a live album! Death Alley joined on stage by two members of The Devils Blood and Muhr to become the Death Alley Six. Invoking the spirit of Selim Lemouchi and turning four songs into overwhelming, emotional waves of pure musical bliss. Spacious, wild and jam-like renditions of the four tracks with excellent momentum and high energy, straight from the great magnet. ~ Joop Konraad (Stoner HiVe)

GET IT HERE

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19. GOYA – HARVESTER OF BONGLOADS

Goya has smashed open the doors and bashed in the windows to shine a bright green beautiful light of miserable disgusted angst on all your fears. This is the sound of modern nightmares come alive, and it’s the most exquisite release I’ve heard from Goya to date. Leanne Ridgeway (Doomed & Stoned)

GET IT HERE

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18. DEMONIC DEATH JUDGE – SEAWEED

Seaweed carries on the psychedelic odyssey with tracks such as Heavy Weed, Seaweed and Cavity. These early tracks grab you by the throat and pull you into Demonic Death Judge‘s volatile world. If you’re not interested in understanding the overall theme of the album then Demonic Death Judge will impress you with the loud and heavy riffs they have at their disposal. Each song on the album is a major highlight. ~ Steve Howe (Outlaws of The Sun)

GET IT HERE

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17. SWEET LICH – NEVER SATISFIED

If you were in England in the late 70’s you would have found it hard not to spot among the armies of spikey haired, safety pin wearing punks the occasional long haired denim clad youth with Iron Maiden or Judas Priest emblazoned across his back. Sweet Lich recreate those heady days of galloping bass lines and twin guitar harmonies, bringing them up to date by sprinkling them with a little stoner grittiness, and even a hint of punk-ish attitude. ~ Frazer Jones (Desert Psychlist)

GET IT HERE

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16. STONE CREAM – SLAVES OF DOOM

After blowing everyone’s mind in early December 2016, Stone Cream are back with another full length album. This is smoking hot. The riffs remain slathered in vicious blues and the vocals stench of whiskey and bacon. More stone than cream, but an invigorating listen either way. Perfect rock and roll album length with high volume, foot stomping groove, and bar room stoner blues. ~ Bucky Brown (The Ripple Effect)

GET IT HERE

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15. TOKE – ORANGE

Three years ago, Wilmington, North Carolina band Toke sent me a demo CD with crude packaging and a button to boot. I stuck it in the car CD player and, my God, what a jam! Fast forward to this January and the band has released its second record, after 2015’s excellent self-titled debut. Imagine the southern-style stoner rock riffing of Down couple with raspy, Bongzilla-style vocals and you’re getting the picture. All that plus unforgettable melodies, something often missing from the more psychedelic style of rock and the harsher edge of sludge. I finally got my chance to see Toke up close and person when they played Doomed & Stoned Fest last year. The energy had the audience transfixed as they played their ever-loving hearts out. If this sounds like your thing, then ‘Orange’ (2017) is just your fix. For an up-tempo rager, check out “Weight of the World.” If you’re pining for a hot summer day and a cool brew, then “Blackened” is your song. There’s even a track featuring T-Roy of Sourvein (“Weak Life”). Yes, sir, Bronco (bass/vocals), Tim (guitar), and Jeremy (drums) have done it again. Keep your eyes on Toke, for if they keep up this level of ferocity and grit, they’ll be no stopping them. Some label better snatch them up and in a hurry. ~ Billy Goate (Doomed & Stoned)

GET IT HERE

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14. 1968 – FORTUNA HAVANA

Things are getting hot and heavy over here. The new 1968 record Fortuna Havana is without any doubt a gigantic monster. One that you will immediately want to hunt and capture, for from the first moments on this feels like the record you have been waiting for. From everything you love about desert, stoner, doom, sludge and seventies combined into one lovely fuzzy animal. Joop Konraad (Stoner HiVe)

GET IT HERE

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13. SCUZZY YETI – SCUZZY YETI

Hard rock and stoner fuzz, delivered with a crunchy late 70’s groove, is Scuzzy Yeti‘s weapon of a choice, a weapon you can hear the band wielding over the five songs that make up their debut EP. Retro-rock, proto-metal call it what you like, it doesn’t really matter what tag you want to pin on “Scuzzy Yeti” good music is good music and this is good music. ~ Frazer Jones (Desert Psychlist)

GET IT HERE

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12. CARNAVAL – MISS UNIVERSE

Carnaval exhibits a little bit of everything and does it well. Heavy, fuzzy grunge soaked guitar riffs, noise driven melodies, psychedelic leaning atmosphere, and an overall hard hitting groove. I hate making the reference but think of a more hairy, gritty QOTSA. Take note on that riff orchestra on ‘Bluebird’. Wow! ~ Bucky Brown (The Ripple Effect)

GET IT HERE

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11. LIZZARD WIZZARD – TOTAL WAR POWER BASTARD

Lizzard Wizzard come from Australia and offer up some thicky, heavy sounds to give your neck tendons a workout! Surprisingly soulful vocals are hoarsely chanted deep down in the mix, emphasising the weight of the music.This is doom/stoner given a swamp -ridden blues makeover which injects a bucketful of groove that is the force that moves these tracks along. ~ Tony Maim (Stoner HiVe & Black Insect Laughter)

GET IT HERE

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10. BLACK PRISM – BLACK PRISM

The quartet from Los Angeles was met with great public approval thanks to the singles: “Satan’s Country” and “Eye for an Eye” and after a long wait, we are finally here with the first full-length of the Black Prism in our ears. Everything perfectly flows while guitar and voice play a fundamental role and this become a certainty that goes on from track to track, where an irresistible reference to the masters Black Sabbath dominates. They reveal absolute gems, such as the starting track “Lone Pine”, characterized by damned rousing riff, or the fascinated “Psychomania”, with smoky blues atmospheres and you can’t not include “Satan’s Country”, revisited in this debut in a more acid and lysergic key! So be prepared to eight tracks and 45 minutes of a music that will make you really travel, a music alluring as fews and that confirms the quality not only of the Black Prism, but also of all the Californian scene of the last years, raising it to the summit of pure excellence in this extremely obscure genre. ~ Mari Knox Knox (Doomed & Stoned)

GET IT HERE

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09. ELBRUS – ELBRUS

There can be absolutely no doubt whatsoever that this psyched out blues extravaganza is a mountain range onto itself. They expertly weave extracts of fuzz, garage, grunge and shoegaze moments into their six massive mounts. Earthy and folky, the will touch your heart and make it bloom! Even in the dead of winter… . ~ Joop Konraad (Stoner HiVe)

GET IT HERE

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08. DSW – TALES FROM THE COSMONAUT

These four Italian freaks slowly changed their steamy hot stoner straight from the desert into something that whirls through the ages as well. Turning into something much more bluesy and groovy. But above all, these tall tales are filled with crushing, fuzz drenched riffs and sweltering solo’s. And a vocal powerhouse that seems to want to screech his truth through history and future. ~ Joop Konraad (Stoner HiVe)

GET IT HERE

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07. GEEZER – GEEZER

This is the 3rd review I wrote for Geezer‘s new album. What more can I say about this album. Spaced Out Stoner Riffs with a sideline of Heavy Blues running throughout. The epic three pronged attack of One Leg Up Sun Gods and Bi-Polar Vortex ranks as the most exciting Stoner riffs I’ve heard this year. This is an album that will entertain the hell out of you. ~ Steve Howe (Outlaws of The Sun)

GET IT HERE

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06. VINNUM SABBATHI – GRAVITY WORKS

Doom metal and stoner rock has long been influenced by Tolkien’s wizards, warlocks, elves, and magick (dating back to the first bundle of Sabbath albums and the music of Led Zeppelin).   As time has marched on, the spectrum of heavy music has evolved thematically, with bands like Electric Wizard conjuring the darker side of the occult and penning send-backs to underground seventies horror films.  It’s a wonder then that a band that takes its name from the opening track of that seminal album, ‘Dopethrone’ (2000) should come to reject the 40-year long tradition entirely.  Vinnum Sabbathi has been a staple of the Mexico City scene for a while, with an extraordinarily ambitious gigging schedule and an impressive discography dating back to 2013.  This year has given birth to the band’s first full-length, ‘Gravity’ (2017).  As the name implies, this is an album about nothing less than the cosmos, with trippy psychedelic doom that imagines the vast emptiness of space, floating into the airless void, and exploring the many unknown mysteries of the universe.  It’s a fascinating collection of five heavy, distorted, doom-laden instrumentals that I find playing quite often since its January debut. A remarkable achievement for the Tamayo brothers (Alberto is working with their own amps on this one, with Roman adding some trippy samples) and the rhythm section of Samuel García (bass) and Gerardo Arión (drums).  With ‘Gravity’ Vinnum Sabbathi enlarges their profile as a band of reckon, to be considered alongside other heavy bands that have broken out of their local scenes to capture the imaginations of doomers and stoners around the world. Billy Goate (Doomed & Stoned)

GET IT HERE

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05. LO-PAN – IN TENSIONS

Lo-Pan has been thrown into the ‘stoner rock’ category a long time, but that genre doesn’t truly define their sound. This is heavy rock, with every note it heaves at you. I don’t want to get high and listen to this EP. I am high *from* listening to this EP. ~ Leanne Ridgeway (Doomed & Stoned)

GET IT HERE

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04. SPACEGOAT – SUPERSTITION

Huge sounding and massive, Spacegoat play Classic Rock and Stoner with authority and power. Add some Proto-Doom and all is well. The riffs are as Sabbathy as you like without being too obvious which of course means they rock like a mountain avalanche. Mid paced songs morph into slow hymns of despair but the melodic and fuzzed solos stop any signs of wrist slashing – instead you have the uncontrollable urge to start nodding and foot stomping. ~ Tony Maim (Stoner HiVe & Black Insect Laughter)

GET IT HERE

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03. BOOK OF WYRMS – SCI-FI/FANTASY

What a great mixture of heavy guitar riffs, slow doomish basslines and some spacerock keys, all lead by an enchanting female singer.  It seems that the fourpiece from Richmond, Virginia, hired a second guitar for their debut album Sci-Fi/Fantasy.  And it sounds like the exact right move to make. Sarah’s ethereal but powerful voice adds a dark folk vibe and make the album a trippy heavy psych journey. ~ Doktor420 (Stoner HiVe)

GET IT HERE

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02. WHITE LIGHT CEMETERY – CAREFUL WHAT YOU WISH FOR

I wish for the time where the whiskey flowed like wine, the sun set over the swamps of the south and the riffs faded into oblivion like smoke on the water. Well, White Light Cemetery have granted that wish with their stunning new album chock full of southern rawk, stoned to the bone riffs, and vocals that’ll melt your butter and frost your mug. Keenan era COC meets Skynyrd in a bar room brawl. They both win. ~ Bucky Brown (The Ripple Effect)

GET IT HERE

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01. DOPELORD – CHILDREN OF THE HAZE

Returning after a three year absence, this is a slab of deep doom. With cleanish vocals telling the tale of weed, depraved priests and general misery, the riffs are suitable slow and pounding. Guitars are distorted hymns of noise that drill into your head but in a good way. This could possibly be one of my albums of the year. ~ Tony Maim (Stoner HiVe & Black Insect Laughter)

GET IT HERE

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Special thanks to the ongoing contributors to the monthly Doom Charts.  You folks help give voice to the underground:

A.S. Van Dorston (Fast n’ Bulbous); Billy Goate (Doomed & Stoned); Bill Goodman (The Evil Engineer); Bucky Brown (The Ripple Effect);  Clint (Hand of Doom Radio); ‘Doktor420’ (Stoner HiVe); Doombeard (DoomBeardZine); Dragon (Metal Nexus); Gram Pola, Son of Sam (Dirty Denim); Pat Harrington (Electric Beard Of Doom); Frazer Jones (Desert Psychlist); Leanne Ridgeway (Doomed & Stoned; Lucas Klaukein – ‘LK Ultra’ (Stoner HiVeYou May Be Dead & Dreaming); Joop Konraad (Stoner HiVe); Lyk (Phantasmagoria); Mari Knox Knox (Doomed & Stoned); Martin Petrov (Rawk’n’Roll – the ‘pass-me-that-bottle’ webzine); Melissa (Doomed & Stoned); MeteorJadd (The Ripple Effect); Papa Paul  (Doomed & Stoned); Rod Reinhardt (Captain Beyond Zen);  Skip (The Burning Beard); Steve Howe (Outlaws of the Sun); Steve Miller (Vertical Chamber Apparatus); Steve Woodier (Shrieks From Below); Tony Maim (Black Insect Laughter, Stoner HiVe);  Tanguy Dupré – “Mr Fuzz” (More Fuzz).

This January 2017 edition of The Doom Chart was tallied by Bucky Brown and edited by Joop Konraad.

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