March 28, 2013 | , | 4

Kongh, Sole Creation

Kongh: Sole Creation

The last we heard from the Swedish doom trio Kongh was on their well received debut, Shadows of the Shapeless. What we hear now, on the band’s third full-length is more than just an evolution. It’s the group hitting their (crawling) stride with a more dynamic sound that incorporates clean vocals, atmosphere and an overall sound that pulls influences from the likes of Mastodon, Baroness and Electric Wizard.

Sole Creation’s doom is heavily textured with sludgy, buzzing guitars and earthquake-inducing rhythms as seen throughout this epic, four track album. The band, though, has expanded their sound to bring in a more stoner-esque and psychedelic vibe that matches the crushing doom quite nicely as songs ebb and flow like a great tide — at one point distant, serene and the next violently crashing upon the shore.

The opening title track gets things started with rolling drums and a bit of melodic guitar work as the first minute or so builds to a crushing round of rumbling riffs. The ten minute long song is full of powerful moments that surge and then fade smoothly to more atmospheric and melodic moments — think Mastodon and even Kylesa. The vocals range from vicious, raspy growls to fairly cleanly sung, haunting passages — each variation coming at just the right point in the song. This opening song truly shows that the band has moved forward with their sound.

“Tamed Brute” is anything but tame as it flows rampant from your speakers with walls of buzzing riffs, thundering drums and momentum altering tempo shifts that show a band willing to experiment with the dynamic nature of their songwriting as it contains some of the more bludgeoning, violent material as well as some of the more melancholic. This is one big song that cruises along as a deceptively quick clip and is over before you know it. “The Portals” continues the melancholic theme with a bit of a droning flow as a bit of a bluesy vibe permeates the air. It’s the shortest song on the album at just over nine minutes, but it’s still an epic beast of a song as weaving melodies meander amongst the heavy-handed drums.

The final song of Kongh’s latest endeavor brings to mind visions of despair and despondency as it slowly progresses through the thirteen minute run time. For the most part, the track has got a decidedly lighter sound though it does erupt here and there with large walls of distorted riffage. All in all, it’s a decent wrap-up of an album that sees the band honing their sound and expanding their songwriting to include many aspects of metal. It may not be as aggressive as past material, but it’s much more developed.