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Released: 2013, Bland Hand Records
Baltimore’s Revelation formed all the way back in 1985 and has released 6 previous albums, 2 compilations, and a slew of demos, and yet somehow they’ve never shown up on my radar. What’s more, some of the band’s ex-members have gone on to play in more high profile bands like Twisted Tower Dire and Place of Skulls. There are just too many bands to keep track of!
Based on INNER HARBOR, I wish I had come across the band sooner, because their style is right up my alley – ‘70s-influenced doom/progressive metal. If you imagine a whole album of Black Sabbath’s trippier moments, you’d have a pretty good idea of where Revelation is coming from. Most of the songs contain extended jam sections and the band is not afraid to massage in some creepy keyboards as well (particularly in the eerie “Rebecca at the Well”). The overall effect is that the band creates a mood and an atmosphere with the music that is uniquely their own, despite the fact that they’re playing a well-worn style. You actually don’t hear too much of this anymore, as most bands go for a more crushing approach to doom.
Unfortunately this also means that the tracks tend to come off as extended jams rather than true songs anchored by memorable riffs – Revelation don’t seem to worry about hooks. I applaud the band for pursuing their vision, but damn, would it kill you guys to throw in a catchy riff every now and then?
Regardless, Revelation deserves respect for persevering in the underground for almost 30 years. Doom fans that can appreciate the occasional lighter moment will find enjoyment in the band’s singular sound.
1. Inner Harbor
3. Rebecca at the Well
4. Eve Separated
5. Jones Falls
6. An Allegory of Want
John Brenner: Vocals, Guitar, Keyboards
Bert Hall Jr.: Bass
Steve Branagan: Drums
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