Slow, fuzzy, fried, swaggering occult doom metal from Greece. Acid Mammoth release their second platter, one full of glacial heaviness for devotees of Doom. Formed in 2015, these guys have released one prior album (the self-title Acid Mammoth) and here, at the dawning of a new decade, further refine their sound, honing in on what makes Doom so great, adding in more touches of psychedelics and some sizzling guitar leads.
This thing is heavy and it swaggers, much like the ancient beast it is named after. Every song plods along, at a good, even pace, never fast, never slow, just sort of bludgeoning you as each composition rolls forward, chewing up the ground and your face at the same time. Opener “Them!” is the shortest track, at about four and a half minutes, and it’s a very concise introduction to the album proper. You get those riffs, swinging drums, prehistoric bass rumble, and those fried guitar solos, all topped by the most lonesome, frigid vocals this side of Black Metal. The album lurches forward into the next track, “Tree of Woe,” which is probably my favorite. It’s epic in all the right ways, sprawling out, loose and full of thunder. The solos in this song demonstrate the “Acid” part of their moniker, even as the riffs fully display the “Mammoth” part. Nearly ten minutes long, it doesn’t feel its length, flowing by in a lava crawl of riffs and echoing, haunted vocals. And don’t sleep on that swing. It’s maybe their secret ingredient, that minor rhythm that keeps the whole thing shuddering along. “Tusks of Doom” doesn’t really change things much, just runs a little bit shorter. A slow headbanger, slower than the two preceding tracks, this track swirls a bit more than the others, echoing with an apocalyptic tone. Don’t sleep on the bass on this one, it will quake your soul. “Jack the Riffer” has its awesome, Black Sabbath-inspired title, supported by waves of reefer smoke that surely must be pouring out of the guitar cabinets at this point. More like ritual magick than songcraft, “Riffer” cascades in waves over the listener, the ebb and flow of the album giving this one a very hypnotic feel. Final track, title track, “Under Acid Hoof,” rounds the gathering out, allowing the riffs to ring and breathe, expand and contract. Again, it’s almost more of a spell than a song. It all builds to a psychedelic-tinged crush, the band simply burying the listener under a landslide of riffs as they exit the building.
As far as Doom goes, these guys don’t really offer anything new or revolutionary. You won’t put this one on and exclaim “I have seen the future of Doom!” What you will do, if you’re a fan of this kind of subgenre, is grin from ear to ear. Here we have a new band that does all the old things right, all while adding their own, unique touch to the proceedings. It will be fun to watch this band mature and grow, and see where their sound takes them. A worthy addition to any Doom Metal collection, go give this one a spin.
Three Buckets of Blood out of Four
Kelly is the author of dozens of stories and dozens of reviews, he likes to write, he likes to read, he likes going to the movies, and he loves to laugh. He hails from the wilds of Kentucky and if you'd like to see more of his work, check out his website: www.kellymhudson.com