DRUJ – Chants to Irkalla
The US death/doom metal horde known as Druj have conjured up their first full-length assault and dropped it onto the unsuspecting masses via the ever-brilliant Godz ov War Productions. I must admit that I am quite fond of many of the bands and releases associated with the aforementioned label and this captivating 6-track offering fits right in with all their other high quality albums.
Druj’s rather dense and utterly morose soundscape is as raw as a bleeding wound and deeply unsettling. Their slow, pulsating riffs draw you in and refuse to let you go while the deep and murky vocals range from nightmarish to introspective. The warm and organic production is appealing but at the same time it has a claustrophobic and oppressive edge to it that is difficult to put into words or describe. Let me put it this way; this is one of those records where you simply do not skip any tracks when listening to it. As soon as you press play, you just know that you have to see it through and stay with these guys until you reach the end of the disc. That says something about the depth of their compositions and their emotionally engaging qualities that suck you in without you barely even noticing it. In terms of melodies, the album strikes a nice balance between instantly memorable parts and dissonant ones. The more you listen to it, the more there is to absorb and digest, which is testament to how effective Druj truly are and that one hardly needs more than bass, drums, guitars, and vocals to get the message across.
All lovers of death, doom, and darkness ought to seek "Chants to Irkalla" out. It is neither experimental nor innovative, but it is interesting and solid all the way through. Recommended!