Sweden’s a rough terrain for new bands trying to distinguish themselves from the pack; it doesn’t matter what genre or classification you choose – death metal, stoner, doom, psychedelic or whatever, Sweden’s got a band or six who deliver the goods.
Now enter 10,000 Years (Erik Palm – Guitars, Alex Risberg – Bass/vocals, Espen Karlsen – Drums), a trio who’s Black Sabbath on steroids brand rightfully fits among the country’s higher caliber acts. Not to mention their new Self Titled debut EP is produced and mixed by none other than Tomas Skogsberg at the infamous Sunlight Studios (ie ‘glorious manufacturing center for the best Swedish death metal’) for those who need a name dropped for validation.
The band opts for a sludgier take on stoner metal in general, with the EP’s five tracks like a blacksmith hammer smashing your brain to slime – the bass heavy production and subsonic guitars yielding a proper stage for tracks like the mid tempo rocker Master Of Oblivion to shine. Risberg is an angry man, at least as far as vocals are concerned, falling somewhere between Tom Araya on the verge of insanity and a sentient, articulate rabid animal – both compliments in my book, and suits the music beautifully.
The band opts for a sludgier take on stoner metal in general, with the EP’s five tracks like a blacksmith hammer smashing your brain to slime…
The second half of the record yields some of the best cuts with standout Lee Van Cleef taking a faster, more upbeat approach to the assault a la Cathedral’s Nocturnal Fist. More to the song’s credit, it sports a bit more variability in Risberg’s delivery. Luckily, lyrics are never an afterthought with this band – an important point in my opinion as the ‘story’ behind a song helps to marry all the components and solidify staying power.
Whether it’s the Lovecraftian lore of the pummeling Into The Jaws Of The Green King, or the H.G. Wells inspired ethereal science fiction ‘vibe’ that smothers the EP as a whole, there’s thought and intent behind the fuzz beyond regurgitated superficial drug references and pseudo occult leanings (not that the latter are bad per se, just a bit overdone these days).
When all the dust settles, we’re left with a compelling outing from a trio of newcomers carving their own slab of earth on the Swedish landscape. If they can keep their feet planted long enough between ‘mind tripping’ to get a full length out, the universe is sure to benefit, that is, if you consider a righteous kick in the teeth the perfect medicine.
Scribed by: Jeremy Moore