Released: 2001, Independent
In a perverse sort of way ESG are like Goat Horn’s older more sophisticated cousin without the sense of humour (Check out my review of goat Horn CD from this month).
ESG are really cool. They have some recognizable influences but not blatant. There is a neat mix of Skyclad, Cathedral and a number of other very talented, under-rated “Metal” (term used sparingly) bands. The imagery like many stoner, doom-death type bands is colorful with a funky Celtic-inspired purple cover and songs like “Black Saturn” and “Green Ashphalt”. It’s hard to explain but not colorful in the sense of overblown dramatic reds but subdued styles and colours, not only in the lyrics and image but in the music as well.
Musically this 5 song EP (plus hidden track 69) merges a number of styles that I am really struggling to put words too, which is maybe a good thing! It has lots of bass and drums, and lots of heavy groove and vibe (although I dislike the terms). Everything sounds sludgy, no shimmering highs or constant fooling around on the fret-board but overall production is solid, I think this would sound really good, really loud. Alternately I could see this band being a great, trippy, late-night headphone session with some wine ….or something… This is a well respected niche of metal and few bands do it well but I can easily see ESG be one of the leaders in the pack. Bottom line great songs, good feel to the whole thing, so check them out at http://www.earthboundsmokeghost.com