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Slings And Arrows
Released: 2014, Self Release
Reviewer: Metal-Rules.com UK Team
Old Thunder is the brain child of Kentucky's Dustin Grooms. Slings And Arrows is his latest effort under the Old Thunder Moniker showcasing 5 excellent tracks of atmospheric black sludge metal.
You may be forgiven for thinking that Slings And Arrows is an EP with having just 5 tracks but clocking in at a reasonable 30 minutes, the CD sits somewhere between EP and album length duration which seems just right to me. Much longer and Slings and Arrows may have been a little hard going.
Slings and Arrows begins with the two tracks Our Fields Are Burning and June 2, 1910, the latter being a reference to William Faulkner's The Sound and The fury Novel. You really get a taste of what Old Thunder is about in this 9 minuter. It's dark, it's heavy and diverse. The beginning of the track contains brooding riffs and pacey drums before taking on a slower tempo towards the middle and latter stages. My first thoughts were that it was reminiscent of more recent Enslaved offerings.
The rest of the album follows suite, the songs are intricate and interesting. Perhaps I would've liked a little more pace in some of the tracks to spice things up a little but that's a personal gripe. Songs like Rainroom are good and have great guitar and vocal melodies fused with superb heavy riffing and the closer Serpent Sovereign ends things on a slow, doomy and bleak note.
In conclusion, Slings And Arrows is a fine album by a man who knows his craft, knows his direction and will no doubt create bigger and better music in the near future. Fans of Enslaved, Ahab and any doom and sludge metal should give this a spin.
By Andy Taylor
1. Our Fields Are Burning
2. June 2, 1910
5. Serpent Sovereign
Dustin Grooms - All instruments
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