Tuesday, March 15, 2016

Album Review: "Lusus Naturae" by Beastmaker

Lusus Naturae
I am not sure how true this is in other genres of music, but in heavy metal fandom there certainly exists a reverence, respect and admiration for the forbearers of the craft.

Since no band is more significant to heavy metal than Black Sabbath,  it stands to reason there will be bands who will seek to flatteringly imitate the founding fathers. 

After all there is no limit to the amount of down tuned doomy power chord riffs the world needs, and Tommy Iommi and company cannot write them all.  In steps Beastmaker.

Every song on this album sounds as though it could be the lost track from one of the classic Sabbath albums.

They have truly achieved the Sabbath sound, which is all the more remarkable because the album was completely produced and recorded by the band.  This allows them to explore the underground (and underserved) world of doom metal free from the influence of those who would steer them back to the commercialized surface.

Although the band hails from sunny Fresno, California, which is about as farm removed from the doom metal birthing ground of industrial Birmingham, England as you can get,  they have set about to embrace the roots of this sound.

They even go so far as to start the album with the obligatory chiming of church bells.  If someone were to ask me to provide an example of doom metal, I would not hesitate to hand them this album.

It is difficult to pick a standout track from the album, largely because the songs are very similar. However, this is not necessarily a negative.  Beastmaker have a sound which consistently delivers what their audience craves and there are certainly no weak tracks.

If pressed to pick a favorite I would reccomend “Mask of Satan” and “Astral Corpse” as being particularly endowed with stellar riffs, the likes of which would make genre masters Witchcraft, Candlemass, and even Black Sabbath proud.

Lyrically, each song could serve as the plot of an occult horror film, which is a strongpoint of the album. Crafting a story through sounds and words is such an integral part of classic metal, and Beastmaker have proven especially adapt in this regard.

The next time you are looking for music to accompany a midnight stroll through a graveyard, I recommend having a copy of "Lusus Naturae" queued up, as Beastmaker have again proven a credit to their genre.

Release: 3/25/16
Genre: Doom Metal
Label: Rise Above Records

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