Voidward is a solo project by Greg Sheriff from Durham, U.S.A.
On ‘Knives’, Greg takes us on a dark journey indeed. We travel to a land of brooding riffs that convey to me a deep emotion. At times melancholic, at other times soul crushingly heavy and drenched in effects that give the whole a Postcore meets Blackmetal vibe, Voidward is an aptly named project and each of the three tracks on this EP is a knife into your heart.
The opener ‘The Plowman’ starts off with an almost Joy Division like lonely guitar. Soon a riff comes in, not only in the music, no! It carves a way directly into your heart. To me it is reminiscent of Warning or Pallbearer. Then a swirling black fog surrounds me as reverberated vocals claw at my face. Vocals that would not be out of place on any black metal album, yet with a rare sincerity. Greg is laying bare his soul here, no doubt about that. A truly mesmerising track that slowly tightens its claws around you, like a siren dragging an ecstatic victim to the ocean floor. I don’t want this to end, even though it’s suffocating me.
Just as I am about to collapse from the weight of the song the next track, ‘There Are Stars In All Wolves Eyes’, opens with a much more rock oriented riff, yet as it goes along I am strangely reminded of mid era Bathory. The vocals are even more reverberated, almost to the point where you can’t recognise them as a voice. The Bathory association becomes stronger around the five minute mark when an epic solo flows over the riffing, and leads us to a psychedelic interlude. Yet this is the deceiving bit, for shortly after, things take on a very old school metal approach! Here it sounds like a heavy metal version of Bathory with even some twin leads thrown in for good measure. This bit however is not quite to my taste and I begin to yearn back to the epic greatness of the opening track. The song ends with the same Bathory vibe, only then with added psych weirdness.
My yearning gets answered with ‘To Scatter One’s Own’. A heavy riff beats me into submission. After I have fallen to my knees in agony, a soothing cloak of psychedelia is laid over my shoulder, the screams and echoing whispers of Greg strangely comforting me. He knows the pain I feel. It is his pain and he lovingly shares it with all who want to hear. Back comes the trudgeon of a riff from the beginning, beating down on my mind over and over and over. The beating ends rather abruptly and a final ambient soundscape drains what is left of me.
This was an immensely bleak journey into the soul of a musician, where the landscape was all jagged mountain peaks, unending rain and a thousand different shades of black. Yet it is a journey I am willing to take again, many times and for years to come. A journey onward to oblivion: Voidward.
Scribed by: Kevin Kentie