Aseethe: Throes (Thrill Jockey)
Louder than War’s Ioan Humphreys gets pummelled into submission (yet again) by Aseethe’s doom metal.
I’m not new to the mighty Aseethe. I reviewed their last LP Hopes of Failure two years ago here and was blown away by the sheer weight and depth of their sound.
17th May 2019 sees the release of Aseethe’s latest LP Throes on Thrill Jokey Records. Aseethe are guitarist/vocalist Brian Barr, drummer Eric Diercks, and bassist/vocalist Noah Koester and they craft tectonic slabs of doom through minimalist approaches to composition.
Throes was recorded at Steve Albini’s Chicago studio Electrical Audio by Shane Hochstetler (Jon Mueller, Northless) and to be honest, it shows. Title track Throes is simply a monumental slab of a prefect mix of noise, drone and doom metal. At 9.29, it’s an unrelenting guitar and bass sludge that’s driven by the perfectly recorded drums. Produced by Steve Albini I’d expect nothing else from the drums to be honest. Just fucking perfect. The deathly growling vocals come in at roughly the 2.10 mark and these mixed with additional strained vocals added later on make for a brilliant tension in the delivery. As the track progresses this tension is ramped up as the sludge slows and slows and slows to a complete stop. It is then restarted with the growling vocals which take you to the bitter and twisted end.
I have to admit that I’ve steered well clear of doom metal for the simple reason, I like my music fast. However, I also like my music intense and uncomfortable too and that is exactly what you get with Throes. As I said at the start, it’s unrelentingly slow, heavy and abstract at times, yet time seems to pass quickly and holy crap this must be great live.
Their PR blurb says that “Where their previous album Hopes of Failure centered around hopelessness, Throes turns its focus toward wrath…Koester penned much of the album’s biting, politically-charged lyrics, aiming vicious barks at fascists and profiteers alike”. Well this anger comes across in spades, and in these fucked up times we live in their message and approach is immensely commendable and much appreciated. We need more anger and aggression at this moment, and any band flogging their art in the name of justice, equality and a fairer society is a no brainer to me. More Aseethe please.
Aseethe are currently on tour in the US. Check out the Thrill Jockey site for details.