Of Spire & Throne - Toll of the Wound (Broken Limb Recordings)

Gloomy doom sludge fudge fun...
Release Date: 
12 May 2014 - 11:30pm

Imagine lying in an open grave while above you, hoards of imps and demons heap clods and sods of cold wet earth onto your face, burying you alive. Imagine that you're simultaneously being subjected to powerful erotic feels. Choking to death and reaching a point of orgasmic delight. That's what this EP by sludge/doom masters Of Spire and Throne is like. Kind of.

There are only three tracks on here but in the tradition of all good doomsters, each song is long and drawn out (yet none of them overstay their welcome). Opener Legacy nearly hits the ten minute mark, Tower of Glass is around eight minutes long and final song Cascading Shard is almost 13 minutes long so fill up your glass and pipe, sit back and immerse yourself in this heartily enjoyable EP.

The weighty bass notes of Legacy immediately wrestle you into submission before being backed up by the guitars. An almost death metal roaring vocal style comes in (I wasn't expecting this but it does work, fitting the doomy sludge vibe in a strangely appropriate way). The low-end is rattling the china dogs off my shelves and I almost need a break from the main riff. It's slow and doused in so much overdrive, I'm reminded of the crushing teeth of an ancient mechanism. Everything is in sync; the bass, guitars and drums are united in a cohesive mass that churns me to pieces. In a good way, naturally...

Cor! That was mad! Some snazzy snare makes me think I'm about to be subjected to some jazz. Instead Tower of Glass throws in a heavy chord. I nip out to the shops, buy some necessities and return. The second chord is just coming in. The gaps between them are massive. I'm anticipating something huge. It's like time has slowed down. Then it all starts to pick up a bit (it's still slow as fek and heavy as...) - Gah! It's slowing down again and fucking with my sense of time - atmospherical, dramatic and purely instrumental (and possibly more suited to a live environment?) I need to medicate myself further to truly appreciate the Saturnian weight of this one. It's an exercise in patience so give yourself over to it entirely or you'll miss out on something that really is quite delightful; it's almost an experiment in how slow you can go - suddenly it slips into Cascading Shard and the valium has removed all boundaries. I only realise the track change because Cascading Shard is ever-so-slightly more up tempo than its predecessor. Are they rumbling vocals or is it guitars? I just don't know. A definite vocal line comes in like an incantation. It's powerful stuff and I love it. I want more. When's the album coming out, fellas?