The sophomore long-player from Helsinki’s God Disease is a gloomy prognostication: Apocalyptic Doom.
The band found a solid reformation in 2013, heading out with a sequence of three EPs, one each year from 2014. The earlier work lay more in the death metal direction than the sound you will hear on the new record, which exists primarily in the land of doom. All for the better as far as I am concerned. God Disease is Ilkka Laaksonen (vocals), Henry Randström (bass), and Mika Elola (drums).
There are six tracks on the new record, the first being “Ashes.” It presents a beautifully stark doom setting, as if in the distant, frozen north. The vocals could very well be from an ice troll sifting through the ashes of some transient interloper. The massive guitar riffs (performed on Apocalyptic Doom by Are Kangus and Samantha Schuldiner) shudder the ground beneath you and render you incapable of other attention. “Built by Dead Hands” rolls out in a similar tempo but is more active in its construction and execution. You can hear it in the percussion most notably, but it also beams through the other instruments. “Remembrance” is the longest song at eight and a half minutes, and it is discordant at its threshold. The music resolves in due course outside the parameters of noise and moves into a grooving riff and mid-tempo, and then back again. The sourness is gone and we are left at the end with heavy tones dissolving in the distance.
Side two opens with the mystical “Leper by the Grace of God.” The tread is fast and the path dangerous. It feels like a calamity, especially the lead guitar break, but sometimes there is solace after the irretrievable bad thing has happened. “Futile Effort to Breathe” is aptly titled as the music could be a heavy stone pressing down on your chest, one too big to shift. Slowly, slowly you lose consciousness as the band plays on. The final step is “Serenity Abandoned,” and it is heavy doom as we have been hearing, but this time it feels more like funeral doom. Whether you chose the path yourself or you were put on it, you know now there is no escape and the only thing you can do is press on. This is a beautifully dark and hopeless album. Highly recommended.
Apocalyptic Doom is out on Friday, March 10th through Gruesome Records. Have a look at the links below.
Gruesome Records, https://gruesomerecords.wordpress.com/
© Wayne Edwards