Nature is the Devil's Church
Black Magician's first album, 'Nature is the Devil's Church', is doom as fucking fuck. This isn't your fusion doom, or your experimental doom, this is doom doom - traditional doom with heavy, slow riffs, glacial jams echoing across black tundras, emitted by bearded men, with SGs and Orange amps, playing at fucking Stonehenge.
Taking cues from Black Sabbath, Cathedral, Saint Vitus and more recently Electric Wizard, Orange Goblin, and the sadly-defunct Reverend Bizarre, Black Magician are sent from Liverpool to take and sacrifice our children, and I say good luck to them. It's about fucking time.
'The Foolish Fire' doesn't set the tone of what's to follow - solo piano, some reverb - but it's a nice opening that, what it lacks in pure heaviness, it makes up for in theatrics and virtuosity. 'Full Plain I See, The Devil Knows How To Row' is an epic journey through a swamp of riffs and swirling Hammond organ that, at around the eight-minute-mark, suddenly speeds up, sounding a little like late-period Satyricon, but with a lot more bottom end.
'Four Thieves Vinegar' trudges further on - the Hammond remains, and the giant, hewn-from-stone riff complementing the vocals perfectly - Liam Yates' vocals sounding on this track more like Wino than on any of the others, and final track 'Ghost Worship' begins with some beautiful finger-picking and birdsong - a clear nod to their folk influences and a nice counterpoint to the piano opener - and abandons the doom completely in favour of a very English sounding melody that ends the album nicely.
Doom is often seen as a jumping-off point into other genres - funereal doom, blackened doom, experimental doom, drone doom - which means that often, just plain old doom metal is neglected. Black Magician are here to prove that this need not be the case.
Posted: Tue 21 August 2012