||WARCRAB REVEAL THEIR SCARS OF AEONS
They have been steadily making a name for themselves in the UK underground Metal scene for the last five years or so, taking their crushingly crafted blend of Death, Sludge and Doom Metal further and further afield and stunning audiences with their sonic brutality and I have been on hand as often as possible to witness this spreading carnage.
So just how good this third EP, 'Scars Of Aeons', from the south-west of England six piece Warcrab is (and I'll say right now that it's pretty damned good) came as no surprise to me, as at least three of them have passed the live performance test already. It follows their well received 2014/15 EP, 'Ashes Of Carnage' and demonstrates a continued upping of their game.
There has been one change to the band line-up since the previous release and that’s in the vocal department, the departure of Kane Nelson and his subsequent replacement on vocals by Martyn Grant, but Kane recorded the vocals for this album just before his departure. His vocal delivery here is not quite as ranging as on the previous releases but certainly has a lot more power, with which comes a lot more clarity to the lyrical delivery, so much so, I can understand all the lyrics with ease, a definite bonus.
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Tempo wise these five new tracks come in a little slower on the whole than their predecessors on 'Ashes...' but with a dirtier, doomy and at times heavier quality, but don't expect total doom and gloom. The closing lead work on 'Conquest' lifts the end of the track up briefly before the next brutal offering and this uplifting burst of closing lead work is present on all five tracks, which also helps the following track arrive with more crushing impact.
Second track, 'Destroyer Of Worlds', does just that, coming at you heavier and more crushing than a rampaging bulldozer while the predominantly haunting and reflective 'In The Shadow Of Grief' elevates midway to quite a crunchy but addictive groove with some great drum flourishes throughout also.
Even more brutal than its predecessors, 'Bury Me Before I'm Born' also has that haunting addictive quality and the final piece, 'Scars Of Aeons', is a stunning sludgy, doomy ten minute marathon, probably the most ambitious piece they have attempted to date, certainly time wise and it's executed superbly, atmospheric at times, otherwise smothering and crushing, wrapping around the listener like a slowly closing fist.
Yet it is also hauntingly engaging with a tempo that rises and falls and has direction changes that flip around in a heartbeat, taking your mind on a journey through space and time, a track which really demonstrates just what this sextet are capable of.
Recorded at Skyhammer Studios and mixed mastered by Chris Fielding (Conan), 'Scars Of Aeons' was released on October 15th via Black Bow Records.