Album of the Month

The debut full-length from Greek band Automaton is weighty, sludgy, coffin-lid-slamming Doom perfection.
(Read more)

Random band

A Connecticut band formed in 2015, Ditch Wizard have that retro '70s school-of-Sabbath feel of proto-Doom, Hard Rock and Stoner/Doom in rough...
(read more)

Soom : Джєбарс

Massive, sprawling and always busy, Soom's swansong album is both fitting and huge.

Sometimes you can have too much of a good thing. Certain delicious tasting drinks, smokeable herbs, rare foodstuffs and intoxicating potions of all kinds can do wonders in small to moderate doses but will either kill you or send you mad if taken in large quantities. Soom play the kind of Stoner/Sludge I absolutely love. But each time I listen to 'Djebars' I always feel as though I've bitten off more than I can chew. At a little over 74 minutes long they've stuffed the CD about as full as it can get. Given that they're no longer a going concern as a band, perhaps they felt they ought to make this one count. They certainly managed that, for 'Djebars' is a more than fitting swansong.

Opening with a rather lavish and atmospheric instrumental, the band are soon into the overtly heavy sounding delivery that characterises much of their output. Mid-tempo groove-laden riff-heaviness gives way to slower 'breakdowns'. The bass lines, audible for the most part, keep a spacey time, adding a somewhat psychedelic element to Soom's music. Elsewhere the atmospherics and spoken words do more for this trippy vibe. The drums, sounding somewhere between dustbin lids and plastic barrels, are nicely up front in the mix cutting through the cloudy guitars and a snare that sounds like someone flicking you squarely between the eyes helps punctuate the large grooves. Everything from Trance-like bass drums to blast beats appear throughout the album, there's never a dull moment to be honest. The rhythms, locking for the most part into a healthy pulse, are also not afraid to spin deftly on the spot from time to time. Elsewhere there are some progressive touches and lighter moments where Soom's more poignant side is exposed, but they don't last too long for the most part. The vocals oscillate, for want of a better description, all over the place. It's been a while since I've heard such disparate vocal styles on the same recording, but if there is a common thread running through them then it would be something along the lines of a cleansing, shamanic expression with a hint of eccentricity.

All in all a very enjoyable listen. Everytime I put it on I was reminded of Ramesses' debut 'Misanthropic Alchemy' for some reason. Could be the all-out approach to murky heaviness and slightly off-piste approach to songwriting whilst all the while keeping those aforementioned grooves fully intact. There are any number of words one could use to describe the Ukranians' final offering. Epic, conceptual, progressive, experimental, heavy and spacey. Even folky at times. Fans of Ketch's debut and anyone rating the likes of Bong, Nomadic Rituals and the aforementioned Ramesses might find this worthy of their attention. 'Djebars' is like a huge plate of my favorite food: nice enough, but not terribly easy to finish in one sitting.

Click HERE to discuss this review on the doom-metal forum.

Reviewer's rating: 8/10


Tracklist :
1. Понад Секвоями: Джерело
Beyond Sequoia: The Source
2. Вщент
3. Сміх дів нічних
Laughing girls
4. Під променем тьмяним захована мрія
Under the beam dimly hidden dream
5. Сувенір фен-шуй
Feng Shui souvenir
6. Полтавський Шлях
The Poltava Way
7. Спокій і тиша цілодобово
Peace and quiet around the clock
8. Коляска
9. Наґно (Bonus)
Nano - Bonus
10. Панічна Атака (Bonus)
Panic Attack - Bonus

Duration : Approx. 74 minutes

Visit the Soom bandpage.

Reviewed on 2019-11-12 by Matt Halsey
Advertise your band, label or distro on doom-metal.com