“Did you know that there’s an acceptable level of rat turds that can go into candy bars? It’s the government, jack. Even government doesn’t care that much about quality. You know what is okay to put in hot dogs? Huh? Pig lips and assholes. But I say, hey, have at it bitches ’cause I love hot dogs.” -Jesse Pinkman
Well hot dog we’re back with another round of ear candy, giving you 30 of the most popular albums within the heavy underground, voted on by the contributors listed at the bottom of the page. If the government doesn’t care about quality of candy bars or hot dogs, it certainly lacks an interest in the underground stoner / doom scene, and that’s fine by us. What we lack in sales we make up for in quality and integrity. The November charts bring us one month closer to the end of a decade, which will go down in the books as a quintessential period of hard and heavy music.
Welcome to Doom Charts, representing some of the finest bloggers, journalists, radio, podcasters and album reviewers from the heavy underground around the globe. Each month, our critics submit their picks for the best new doom, sludge metal, stoner-psychedelic and heavy 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…
25. STEW – PEOPLE
Heavily influenced by blues-rock and 70s hard rock (as Swedish people usually are), the young band crafts 11 straight songs, without tricks, that brings back the best moments of the 70s. They, irreverently and without shame, play the songs as they were seasoned veterans. They are classic rock lovers on fire building a crackless work, a whole album in which the essence of the best 70s blues-rock vibrates. Although they are influence by bands like Led Zeppelin, Bad Company o the early Whitesnake, they dress like Free when they dive into pure heavy-blues. A vocal fierceness driven by an everlasting rhythmic section over which some acid guitars slap you in the face.
24. THE GRAND MAL – THE GRAND MAL
When members of two of Oxford, UK’s finest come together you’ve got to expect fireworks and fireworks is exactly what you get from The Grand Mal. Elliot Cole and Ryan Cole from Desert Storm and Rob Glen and Dave-O from Mother Corona have joined forces to bring to our ears a glorious sound that is hard, heavy and raucous yet at the same time is melodious and catchy, a wonderful amalgamation of desert rock grooviness, hard rock bluster and stoner rock growl that is mellow and aggressive in equal measure.
23. BASK – III / NEW!
(Asheville, North Carolina)
The progressive take on their stoner metal sound, with all of that post-rock, doom and heavy psychedelic goodness is worth every minute of your time. The BASK quartet crafted something vibrant, clear and thoughtful, there is no note out of place on III or awkward time signature anywhere to be found. Indeed, there is something spiritual about the entire atmosphere. Something worthwhile and something that will guide along a path to something holy. It feels like you are swimming in the most wonderfully clear lake of water. And those Americana moments, yes Americana, add even more glory to something that is already so lively, high spirited and full of energy.
22. DEAF RADIO – MODERN PANIC / NEW!
Deaf Radio’s second full-length is dark, sexy and catchy as fuck. Criminal would be another appropriate descriptor. As in it is criminal how compelling this album is. Modern Panic contains nine well crafted songs that are propelled by low end thunder and drenched in new wave minutiae and pop sensibility. Go ahead. Press play. I dare you not to like this.
21. ORODRUIN – RUINS OF ETERNITY / NEW!
(Rochester, New York)
It was right after last months edition when Ruins of Eternity by the Orodruin trio came into the collective peripheral vision of the Doom Chart Contributors. It immediately caused a stir and all of the doom metal fanatics went all rubber and extremely giddy. For the nine tracks on this sophomore release (after a sixteen year hiatus) are all filled with metal, parts NWOBHW and loads of proto-metal and seventies doom. This is intense and pure doom songcraft, essential down to the very fiber of everything we love about doom and metal. With grace, with poise and with attitude! There shall be no quarter asked and surely none given. Orodruin is back to show the squares some class!
20. MONOLORD – NO COMFORT
Man, these guys are dull. On the strength of the reviews given to their 2017 album Rust I saw then live. Meh. Volume and the ability to play one chord very slowly did not impress. So on to No Comfort.
There seems to be a new urgency to the songs this time around. Compositions have light and shade to them. Tunes have some epic and hummable riffs. Lots of lovely, sparkling solos are strewn throughout to give variety and tone. In short, I think this is the best thing they have ever done and fucking love this album. Whether die-hard fans will like it, I’m not sure but this time around Monolord have produced something that stands out. Please send hate mail via: Doom Charts!
19. TARABAN – HOW THE EAST WAS LOST / NEW!
How The East Was Lost is full of Eastern flavors: Slow, sleazy, sonic hip-shakers hook-drunk with synth heavy doom and dreamy interludes. Strident, passionate and primal, How The East Was Lost celebrates the nuances of far-away lands with a moghul’s feast of vibrant psychedelia.
~REEK OF STOOM
18. KADAVAR – FOR THE DEAD TRAVEL FAST
German hard psych rockers Kadavar’s fifth album, For The Dead Travel Fast, in which they try on the skin suits of Uncle Acid & the Deadbeats’ psych noir. Not their fiery best, but quite fun. Great way to start PSYCHing up for Halloween: “IT RUBS THE LOTION ON IT’S SKIN…”
~TONY VAN DORSTON
Friends. Weedians. Metalheads. Lend me your ears. I would like to present to you Kadavar’s, For The Dead Travel Fast, so that it might take its rightful place among the pantheon of great albums that have made heavy ripples in 2019. With fierce guitar leads and thumping bass and drum this trio possesses everything that was and is great about the 60’s/70’s era of “classic rock.” This album has the soul of The Rocky Horror Picture Show soundtrack and some of the seediness of Uncle Acid and The Deadbeats to boot. Need I say more? Perhaps. JUST PRESS PLAY! You’ll be a better person for having done so.
17. SOLACE – THE BRINK / NEW!
Never hearing these guys before, I came to this review with fresh ears and no sense of their past. What can I say? One of the best metal albums I have heard this year hands down. Fuck off solos, riffs from the underworld all played with a mix of doom, hardcore punk, metal and stoner vibes which propel the songs along like an out of control truck hurtling off a cliff. This is the good shit.
16. SAINT KARLOFF – INTERSTELLAR VOODOO
One song, 40 minutes long could end up like a musical suicide but Saint Karloff manage to attract my ear canal the whole trip. After the song is done, I press play again.
Don’t sleep on this song. It’s a real dopesmoker. Actually it’s pure seventies bliss for 40 minutes.
~’PAPA’ PAUL ROTE
Interstellar Voodoo dragged me off on an epic quest of crumbling empires, ancient battles, and dope-filled alien worlds with their trademark fuzz wizardry. By the end of it, I’m spent, my jaw’s hanging, and my Jaffa cake broke off into the coffee. An outstanding romp through the gamut of Underground sound!
~REEK OF STOOM
15. DROID – HYPERREALITY / NEW!
Australia’s Droid jam heavy doomic stoner grooves edged in dank sludginess and dark lysergic textures something that makes the band’s latest opus, Hyperreality, a challenging but at the same time rewarding listen. There is a fragmented and schizophrenic feel to the songs Droid offer up for your listening pleasure on Hyperreality that keeps you pinned to the edge of your seat desperately trying to second guess the direction any one song might take at any given moment.
14. SURYA – OVERTHROWN / NEW!
A conceptual album that navigates between the waters of the sandy sounds from the California deserts in the 1990’s and the hard-rock currents that were born in the 1970’s. A balance that is sustained in powerful rhythms dressed with a lush fuzz and monolithic riffs without giving up careful melodies that lie in psychedelic backwaters with a certain Andalusian essence. The result is an attractive album that flows with ease in each of its songs and ends up surprising us with the maturity of each one. The guitars overlap on different levels to form tight and effective tunes that are colored with different influences to end up building a solid, multi-colored canvas.
13. HEXGRAFV – RITUAL / NEW!
Meditative at one point, groovy at one point. Truly addictive the entire album! When they released Altare I saw a band that has a bright future. I see no reason to changed that but now I’m sure they are the future. A top-candidate on my best of the year list. Welcome to the Valley of Doom!
12. WHEEL OF SMOKE – SONIC CURE / NEW!
Ride Wheel of Smoke’s haze fueled unicycle of groove through sonic landscapes constructed from the skeleton of 70’s hard rock and proto-metal, marvel at the complex arrangements and intelligent lyrical content of their prog-like tomes and be amazed by the levels of musicianship each and every member brings to the table on this stunning and at times breathtaking release, If this is the “cure” then bring on the disease!
11. KAMCHATKA – HOODOO LIGHTNING / NEW!
The first four of Swedish trio Kamchatka were already bloody amazing and managed to shine a light on the various influences they had. Hoodoo Lightning spins around its axis on very powerful and fast pace blues. Hard rock grafted on that seventies spirit, full of energy and a majestic groove. The first two track seem to serve as whirling intro to take the listener to a state of bliss before the dark magic truly explodes! Highly addictive!
10. BRUNT – ATARAXY / NEW!
True to their style, they are reaching to even deeper and showing more atmospheres. In this new album, the music will seize the senses and absorb the listeners with its psychotropic grooves and create a euphoric state of mind. Hypnotic, meditative, spellbinding-there are many adjectives you could use to describe an album that ends up being more of a graphic, sensory experience. This album is one of them-with each new listen you discover new matrices that make it much more enjoyable. ATARAXY, developed in the shadows is easily one of the great instrumental surprises of the times.
This new album is an opportunity for everyone who still hasn’t discovered one of the most solid and creative trios in the world of Instrumental Stoner and Heavy Psych. Relax and let the sensations come to you.
9. DEVIL TO PAY – FOREVER, NEVER OR WHENEVER / NEW!
Indiana’s riff-renegades, Devil To Pay have been filling ears with their gloom ridden, grungy stoner rock for over 15 years. I’ve enjoyed every riff along the way. This album finds the band exploring and expanding their approach, adding a bit of prog to the mix. Arguably their most intriguing and well crafted album to date.
8. RAINBOWS ARE FREE – HEAD PAINS / NEW!
Thundering rhythm, cosmic energy, blinding riffage, punishing psychedelic energy; all symptoms of Head Pain by Rainbows Are Free. Those commanding tones are also remedies, in a jaded scene of saturated Sabbath wannabes, revealing pots of aural gold at each end of the spectrum.
7. CLOUDS TASTE SATANIC – SECOND SIGHT
CLOUDS TASTE SATANIC’s new brainstormer, Second Sight sees potent waves of acidic and acerbic heavy psych cannon from the speakers: a free-wheeling, foaming and feisty two-tracker which shows a continuing of the path they took with Evil Eye..it’s a lot trippier, Doomier and crazier and reminds me of the latest COSMIC DEAD album in many ways….guaranteed to take you to The Outer Limits.
~REEK OF STOOM
6. BRUME – RABBITS / NEW!
(San Francisco, California)
Gnarling fuzz smears tar – thickened riffage over grimy canvasses of despair, tottering on crippled haunches of emaciated melodies and phantom power, a laval flow of funereal Doom. Closer Autocrat’s Fool condenses the vile essences of the previous tracks into an all – encompassing finale of surging riffs and suffocating silences….Rabbits is a truly excellent example of Craft and Drama working in evil harmony!
~REEK OF STOOM
5. PSEUDO MIND HIVE – OF SEERS AND SIRENS
(Brunswick East, Australia)
Instant Doom smacks you upside the head: the dirty, Stone-fuelled riffs of Sails At Dawn switch fast and slow. mimicking the tidal drag towards the sea and the furious heave-ho of oarsmen. The Dreamer’s Burning Door is a rapid machine-gun burst of heavy organ and chugging riffs, Gaze of Ptolemy a grinding, slow bubbling culture that bursts into peaking solos and anthemic oomph! A superb example of Australian Psychedelic Doom.
~REEK OF STOOM
4. GODS & PUNKS – AND THE CELESTIAL ASCENSION / NEW!
(Rio De Janeiro, Brazil)
Just when you thought they couldn’t get any better, Gods & Punks are back with another opus of cosmic doom from the steamy tropics of Rio. The sinister slappage of bass rattles viciously as the commanding fuzz shreds in the spirit of early The Sword and ferocity of modern psychedelic doom.
3. YEAR OF THE COBRA – ASH AND DUST / NEW!
Ash and Dust begins with an ominous creak of bass fuzz, rippling into a tumultuous roar of heaviness before the lull and lullabye-soft vocals melt into your ears like warm Olive oil. Stonefield are an obvious comparison and YOTC deliver in similar capacities, yet there’s a definite Spacey infusion here that sets them apart, Vocally tight and melodic, the melodies orchestrate the Doom theatrically and forcefully. The Divine looms darkly sinister in a harsh shadow of savage riffery and counterpoints the title track’s Hard Punk spikiness and abrasive edges. The album exudes power and depth throughout, wreaking emotive angst and anguish with each track. Highly accomplished!
~REEK OF STOOM
2. DOMKRAFT – SLOW FIDELITY / NEW!
From the start this Swedish trio had a sound of their own. Domkraft has that rare ability to completely hypnotize you just by the sheer power of musical intensity. Slow and monotone heavy music that elevates you into another universe. Riff. Hook. Repeat. And this formula also works very well in this short EP format. This is four tracks that will once again blow your mind and ears.
1. HAZEMAZE – HYMNS OF THE DAMNED / NEW!
Hazemaze, the 70’s heavy stoner doom trio from Stockholm has christened their 2nd studio album on Cursed Tongue Records in collaboration with Ripple Music. Heavier than Hell, full of energy from the word go, but dark…doomy dark, like the standard that has been set by Tony Iommi. There are rock-crushing riffs and infectious bass and drums are heard thru-out this gem of an album. This superb album will be going with me in the afterlife.
Special thanks to the ongoing contributors to the monthly Doom Chart. You folks help give voice to the heavy underground:
Aaron Pickford (The Sludgelord); Adam Walsh (Earmunchies); Andy Benson (Nerve Salad); A.S. Van Dorston (Fast n’ Bulbous); Bryan Coffey (Indy Metal Vault); Bill Goodman (The Evil Engineer); Billy Goate (Doomed & Stoned); Rob Blasko (VolumeForever.com); Bob “Mr. Weird Beard” Baker (More Fuzz Podcast); Bobby Rayfield (Trendkill Radio); Brandon Collins(Super Dank Metal Jams); Bryan Coffey (Indy Metal Vault); Bucky Brown (The Ripple Effect); Clint Willis (Hand of Doom Radio); Chris Beck (Doom Tomb Podcast); Chris Latta (Indy Metal Vault); Doktor420 (Stoner HiVe); Doombeard (DoomBeardZine); Frazer Jones (Desert Psychlist); Geoff Leapord (Atom Heart Mutha); Gram ‘Son of Sam’ Pola (Dirty Denim); Héctor “Mr. Heavyhead” Hurtado (More Fuzz); Hugo Hulleman (Metalfan.nl); Jamey Morris (Fistful of DOOM); Jason Roach (Indy Metal Vault); Jay Morgan (High Desert Valley Radio); Jim Thompson (Heavy in the Hills); Joe Eldridge (Shadebeast Records); John Gist, (Vegas Rock Revolution); Joop Konraad (Stoner HiVe); Ken Elliott (Heavy Planet); Kyle Twadelle (Stoner HiVe); Leanne Ridgeway (Riff Relevant); Lucas Klaukien (Outlaws of the Sun); Lyk (Phantasmagoria); Magnus Tannergren (Into The Void Radio); Marc-Eric Gagnon (Stonefly Effects); Marc C. Pietrek (VITRIOL, INC / A DARK UNITED FRONT); Marcus Greybeard (FuzzHeavy Podcast); Mari Knox Knox (Doomed & Stoned); Mark Partin (The Ripple Effect); Martin Petrov (Rawk’n’Roll); Matt Slighter (Cheeto) (Hwy 420, Core of Destruction Radio) Matthew Thomas (Taste Nation); Matheus Jacques (October Doom); Mathieu Van Der Hert (Dutch European Stoner Rock); Melissa Marie (Doomed & Stoned); Melissa Spence, (Stoner Witch Radio); Mike Williams (I Talk to Planets); Pat Harrington (Electric Beard Of Doom); Pat ‘Riot’ Whitaker (Riff Relevant); ‘Papa’ Paul Rote (Doomed & Stoned); Reek of STOOM (Stoner HiVe); Remi (Remi VL); Roberto Lucas (Denpa Fuzz); Roberto Fuentes (La Habitación 235); Rod Reinhardt (Captain Beyond Zen); Samir Asfahani (Super Dank Metal Jams); Steve Howe (Outlaws of the Sun); Steve Miller (Vertical Chamber Apparatus); Steve Rodger (God’s Holy Trousers); Steve Woodier (Shrieks From Below); Svempa Alveving (Into The Void Radio); Tanguy ‘Mr Fuzz’ Dupré (More Fuzz); Tom Hanno (Tom’s Album Reviews); Tom Schmahl (Rock Circuz); Tony Maim (Black Insect Laughter, Stoner HiVe); Tony Van Dorston (Fast n Bulbous)
Feel free to send in your albums to firstname.lastname@example.org where they’ll be delegated to the crew above to determine their thoughts and gather the votes at the end of the month. Leave us comments below and let us know what you think about the Charts.