Mammoth Caravan, Ice Cold Oblivion (2023)

The new record from Mammoth Caravan has the weight and pace of an ancient glacier of doom: Ice Cold Oblivion.

Mammoth Caravan is from Little Rock, Arkansas. They are a doom band, and they don’t sound like anything I heard when I was last in Little Rock. Huge riffs and inventive constructions surround variegated vocals and flaring guitar to produce fantastic results. The band is Brandon Ringo (bass, vocals), Evan Swift (guitar vocals), and Robert Warner (drums).

The odd tinkling sounds that open the set on “Ice Cold Oblivion” give no clue that titanic riffs will follow. Neither do they hint at the gravely vocals which align perfectly with the other instruments. Mystical, freezing doom is what this is. “Nomad” is a clomping continuation, a revving up of the premise established in the opener. With a tighter pace and steady drive, much ground is covered, and a tasty lead guitar break is introduced, opening the way for huffing vocals that might have come from an actual mammoth. “Petroglyphs” is a melancholic spellcaster, a cratered celestial body of ancient wisdom. The beautiful wind-down is haunting.

Side two offers first “Megafauna,” a temperamental tune that rattles you and brings on an itch. “Periglacial” is a fascinating piece, with unexpected drumming and vocals, that latter being clean and clear at the front, creating an epic metal expectation and delivering something off to the side of that. It is one of my favorite tracks on the album. The set closes on “Frostbite,” an eleven-minute creeper that is so entrancing you might forget to breathe. I love this song. The entire album has impressed me, clocking doom as it does and ploughing a course all its own. Recommended.

Ice Cold Oblivion is out on Saturday, February 25th. Listen and buy at Bandcamp through the link below.

Band Photo by Kurt Lunsford.




© Wayne Edwards

Mammoth Caravan, Ice Cold Oblivion (2023)