Review: Wharflurch ‘Psychedelic Realms Ov Hell’

Oh Damn! Are you guy’s ready to dive head first into the swamp, swim through reeds and darkness and drop through a portal to another dimension? A dimension filled with dope space terrors, giant mushroom priests with tentacle arms and masses of psychedelic monstrosities described through the audio horror of death metal, teaming with oodles of doom influences, it’s Psychedelic Realms Ov Hell from Floridian death dudes Wharflurch. It’s their debut full length after some killer EP’s, like the beautifully titled Shitslime, or Lurking Doom from last year, which were both highly received, so there is some real expectation sitting on this release. It’s being put out by Personal Records, dirty death legends Gurgling Gore and releases this Friday, 3rd September.

Wharflurch ‘Psychedelic Realms Ov Hell’

Taking heavy influences from the old school on their usual abyssal level, knuckle draggingly heavy sound, the Lurch take that and introduce way more progressive and psychedelic sounds churning it up into a swirling cosmic chasm, channelling all the sounds and atmosphere from classic sci-fi epics like Silent Running, Scanners, Altered States, The Andromeda Strain and any John Carpenter soundtracks. You can hear that especially in the smooth android like voice samples that are splattered across the record and used perfectly to add some variance that blend the pieces together, think Hal but with some cords loose, way more robot like and a touch more… sexy and you’ll get the idea… stupid sexy Wharflurch.

The biggest plus point on this record is the ATMOSPHERE, the guys really step it up in this department, it utilises doom elements in the groups sound and builds this huge, cavernous and cosmic aura that just stands behind and drapes itself over the whole performance, like a Unicron gazing at a reality he’s about to devour. This atmosphere moves at a trudging pace and twists and turns alongside Wharflurch’s death metal madness, it takes their previously crushingly heavy sound into the stratosphere.

The Usual dual delivered vocals from Myk ‘I have the best chin beard in the world’ Colby and John Mamo are present and as usual are a mix of gruesome low gutturals and razor like highs, purely designed to tear through your support line to the spaceship and leave you careering through the terrifying cosmos being strewn up. The vocals are really effective at changing the tone and the feel being blasted out by the group, adding quality variation to the sound which is needed in that step up from an EP to a full length like this.

Wharflurch can riff with the best of them and on Psychedelic Realms Ov Hell they bring their mutated blend of low-down dirty ass death and doom together…

Wharflurch can riff with the best of them and on Psychedelic Realms Ov Hell they bring their mutated blend of low-down dirty ass death and doom together and let them grow like the triffids with a fluidity that is perfectly matched with additional synths. On tracks like record highlight Stoned Ape Apocalypse, the fluid riffs change to these barbaric bouncing lines that are just perfect, like being repeatedly smacked over the head with a stone club, what’s cool is this change up in pace and brutality is perfectly eased back into the records overall spacey atmosphere, if the record is like a voyage through some trippy dimension, then Stoned Ape Apocalypse is the fucking meteor shower.

The tone on the drums is just awesome, supernatural and full of character, just like the performance from behind the kit. Accompanied with the huge bass, it’ll have your bones and your bowels rattling with every strike of the skin and flick of the string. With a great performance you need a production to match and I’m so pleased to say that this is present here. It sounds so massive and expansive that all of those things I have been describing get their time and space to shine without sacrificing the gristle or atmosphere that’s so important in this genre.

As far as debut full lengths go, this one will be hard to top, but I have no fear in that this is just the first major step in what will be a killer discography for this group. I’d like to shout out the guys in Wharflurch too for being really approachable and friendly, always willing to chat and cracking me up when appearing on genre royalty YouTube shows from Kens Death Metal Crypt, which you should also check out if you want to know anything about this genre as Ken is a freaking encyclopaedia, and also a super great dude so shout out to Ken! I’m sure like me he’s going to love this record and recommend that you get off your tushy and go buy it right now, don’t be a dummy!

Label: Gurgling Gore | Personal Records
Band Links: Facebook | Bandcamp | Twitter | Instagram

Scribed by: Matt Alexander