UNDERJORD – Sheol
Finnish experimental doom/death here, Underjord release their debut album "Sheol" and it’s a 9 song effort that has pluses and minuses going for it. The slower, lumbering riffs and equally captivating tempos make "Book of the Dead" and the "To Death" trilogy of tracks very mindful and entertaining. Injecting normal metal instrumentation with woodwind reed accents that conjure up Third World nations in "To Death III", the synthesizer use also has this interesting effectual texture different from the norm.
The semi-moaning, semi-gurgling vocals of Thomp Finholm will seal the deal for most- his delivery to my ears is a touch annoying. I much prefer his clean, low range over the louder gravelly voice that comes through. You can put in all the spacey keyboards, bongos, and evil, snail-paced dark chords you want, if the singing isn’t of the same make up in terms of presentation and execution, we are going to have problems. Inspired by myths, legends, and monsters, "Hunt of the Death God" has synthesizers Type O Negative would be proud of.
In the end, if ethnic and cultural textures work for you in experimental doom metal, "Sheol" could be your favorite newcomer of 2014.