Polluted Temples is the perfect title for the new Dark Meditation album as it takes no prisoners and preserves no icons.
Seattle metal mongers Dark Meditation started their band in 2019. They released a demo that year and a second the following year. Polluted Temples is their first full-length album. The band is J. W. Mullett (bass), Will Klintberg (drums), Rane (guitar), Ian (guitar, Synth), and A. D. Vick (vocals).
There is an intro piece and nine tracks on the new album. “Babalon.Money.Magick” gets the show going with a catchy rolling riff and medium-coarse vocals walking together on a city street that seems to be changing into something else as the song goes along. The twin guitar leads has superb punches and nice overlaps. This is a mid-tempo warm-up. “Haunt Of Fear” follows and it is more severe, more pressing.
“Strange Caress (Of The Night)” takes a different chop at heavy – the opening salvo reminded me a touch of Thin Lizzy but departed after that toward a pseudo-melodic Misfits-inspired pugilism. And then “Masters Coil” is off in a slightly different direction, more solemn and darkly yearning.
There are flat-out dashes like “The Howling Wild,” and more measured and reflective tracks such as “Nocturnal Forever.” It all comes to a close with the title track, a brooding tale of woe that casts doubt on our understanding of ourselves. Surprisingly sentimental, the final song unerringly delivers the needful metal. The expansive lead work is as credibly thoughtful as it is headbanging. I got the feeling listening to this album that the band has a lot more to say and other landscapes to explore. I am looking forward to the journey. Recommended.
Polluted Temples is out on Friday, January 28th from Satanik Royalty Records. Make your offerings and take your blessings.
Band photo by Sarah Hammel.
Satanik Royalty Records, https://www.satanikroyaltyrecords.com/