After releasing one of the best albums of 2021, with the immense Black Harvest London based doomsters Green Lung have set the bar pretty high and the expectations surrounding their third album, This Heathen Land have been palpable, and with the mysterious intro, they entice you headlong into their world of ‘70s rock, folklore and the occult.
In the words of vocalist Tom Templar, ‘this album is the most complete manifestation of the band’s vision to date, fulfilling their long held goal to create the definitive soundtrack to the folk horror film in our heads’ and with opening track The Forest Church you can sense the dark lords being summoned from the depths of hell, with the sweeping melody and haunting keyboards from John Wright, to go along with the anthemic chorus.
First track to be released as a single, Mountain Throne is a paean to the Pendle Witches and begins with another sumptuous riff from guitarist Scott Black, and it’s so easy to listen to, nothing complex, just sensible melodies that keep the song moving, and is certain to be a crowd pleaser. The atmosphere is ramped up further with Maxine (Witch Queen) which is a stunning track, based on the life of real witch, Maxine Sanders, the High Priestess at the heart of the Alexandrian Witchcraft. It sweeps along at great pace, with eerie swirls of emotion against the background of sinister keyboard wizardry.
a fantastic album full of doomy, occult rock magnificence…
The immensely strong opening to the album is completed with the third single released One For Sorrow, which has a beginning that befits the legendary Hammer House of Horrors series of the 1980s. With lyrics exploring the burden of depression, it comes as no surprise that it’s a superbly crafted song, fusing traditional doom with a gothic synth atmosphere, whilst having that Sabbath-esque crushing slow motion beatdown.
The splendour continues with the mesmerising Song Of The Stones, a slow, brooding track with hypnotic drumming, that makes your mind drift away to a faraway land. This is followed by The Ancient Ways which bursts into life from the off, and you will be beaming, as this has that Green Lung feel running throughout it, and by now you will be fully immersed in their world.
Completing the album, they finish with Hunters In The Sky, a magnificent song, possibly my favourite on the album, with its doomy, eerie, ominous feel, where you genuinely feel like you are the prey, before Oceans Of Time slowly releases you back into the wild, after you’ve been a willing participant in the bands hedonistic party. This will no doubt make it into many people’s AOTY lists, as it’s a fantastic album full of doomy, occult rock magnificence.
Scribed by: Matthew Williams