I continue to have a weakness for metal bands from Austin, Texas, the place where I was born and spent my formative years and to which I still return a couple of times a year. But I’m not so weak-minded about bands from Austin as to lose a sense of perspective about the music — and I’m pretty sure Unmothered’s new EP would have blown me away even if I’d grown up in Bangkok.
This new three-song offering is entitled U M B R A and it’s being released by Crowquill Records on May 26. Today we give you the chance to hear the EP for yourselves before jumping for it on the release date. Since you can listen for yourselves, I’m not sure there is much to be gained by writing about U M B R A, but I can’t help myself.
The music is abrasive and heavy as hell and hits like a body slam. It generates a corrosive, poisonous miasma, but the riffs and gunshot drumming are so powerful that they have an almost physical impact, and the savagely horrifying vocals would be right at home in a black metal album. So you get ominous, threatening, hateful atmospherics at the same time as you get a vigorous headbanging. It’s vicious, skull-battering, spine-jarring stuff… and very infectious stuff, too.
Trying to capture the music in genre terms isn’t easy, but think of a union of elements from sludge, doom, stoner, and black metal, integrated seamlessly and unleashed with a lot of galvanizing energy. Oh, I forgot psychedelia — there’s a dose of that (along with some clean vocals) in this EP as well, especially in the pulverizing third track “Scarp”.
UK artist Andrew Sloan created the album’s cover art, which I happen to think is as fantastic as the sounds that lie beneath it. I’m also happy to report that Unmothered are working on a full-length record that should see the light of day by year-end.
Okay, enough verbiage. Time for you to listen…