Kråkslott – The Witchhammer
The raw atmosphere and simplicity of the guitars, bass, and drums definitely complete the 80s/ early 90s doom sound with the opening ‘Ritual of Lies.’ It is grim, ugly, and the echoing vocals which are a little muffled and sound like they are underwater are lifted by the slow, churning groove of the instruments. There isn’t much room for melody save for the guitar solos, so those looking for technical or virtuouso work might not find this quite appealing. The second track ‘The Witchhammer’ changes things up a little with a heavier focus on the reverb and distortion to enhance the vocals to make them darker and really bring out the sludge elements, but at the same time the track betrays itself by adding a sort of whistling sound that gets in the way of the listener as the track goes on and on. Still, for those looking for a step above basic doom metal will find the horns, chanting, and overall ‘cthulian’ atmosphere quite engaging.
It is very hard to give full judgement to Kråkslott based off of 2 tracks, but the EP is a starter for those who are just hearing the band for the first time. If their debut is like this then it certainly will provide an atmospheric rush for those who enjoy their doom crushing but not quite on the level of funeral doom. The thunderous tones of the guitars, drums, and vocals serve a tribute cacophony to echo the horrors of the inquisitorial times, though those who are more well versed in doom metal might find the stripped down sound a little too basic. New listeners who do enjoy this style would do well to check out the group’s self titled debut to get more of a full feel for their sound.
2.5 / 5 STARS