And here we are friends of the Shaman, having watched the metal genre known as Sludge expand beyond the Dirty South, beyond the British Midlands and out onto the dirty seething globe. Spreading its grease within the confines of groove, feedback and sloth-like slowness, with a menace that is unique within the Heavy Metal genre. Having witnessed this malignant growth from the backwoods out to new territories, we have Guinea Pig, a band that may hero worship at the feet of Iron Monkey and Acid Bath but hail from a land not known for its bayou nor it’s cold grey dismal climate. So what do I make of the first sludge I’ve ever heard from Greece? I’ll tell ya.
Put on the song ‘King Monkey’ (blatant?… Well at least they wear those influences with pride), and listen to that riff, because it is a fucking riff. A culmination of power chords and rhythm, fed through down-tuned guitars blasting on distortion levels so high the riffs nearly inaudible, it truly hits that riff sweet spot. The song then twists into slower doom passages forming a basic song structure that begins to amble and lives out its welcome maybe a little too long.
Second song ‘hog’ is somewhat more up-beat in tempo, but still displaying a clear love of the great Iron Monkey. Vocalist Christos apes the legendary Mr J Marrow a little to closely for it to be comfortable in places, but if we’re honest, who better than that late great throat lacerator to copy? Final song ‘Lizard Skin’ is pretty much more of the same and rounds off a solid demo. The band don’t yet possess the dynamic and individual approach to garner interest beyond the underground, but they are good songwriters and they have ability within a strict pigeon-holed genre to shine through. But most importantly of all they have one badass riffmeister in their ranks and that may just see this particular Greek sludge band rise beyond their geographic confines.
Label: Self Released
Scribed by: Andrew Sloan