But what would you expect from a band composed of members of several black/doom, power grind and psychedelic bands? Of course this multitude of influences has leaked into their sound, much to my delight too. It provides plenty of variation, not only musically but also as far as vocals are concerned. With both sludge screams and deep, guttural growls over the thick riffs, Ketch certainly convinces.
The album opens with 'Fertile Rites by Sacrifice', vintage sludge metal song but also one that carefully flirts with dark jazz, another one of my favorites. Yet, as the distortion, the hammering drums and the vocals come in, we're riding on waves of doom for about an hour or so. Further down the record Ketch guides us along funeral doom, post-metal and even flashes of death metal, the latter beautifully represented in the riffing in 'En Nomine Eius'.
'Estranged' is the strange breather before Ketch kicks off the second part of the album with my absolute favorite, the massive 'Detached and Conquered'. This is another one of those hypnotizing beatdowns that only sludge metal bands can deliver and in doing that, these Americans absolutely convince. I can easily see hordes of fans in front of the stage, sluggishly banging their heads to these waves of sludge hammers.
So yes, this is an excellent, well-varied and highly immersive piece of sludge doom, one every fan of the genre should get his hands on. It's a long album too, with ten songs. In all lasting for a bit over an hour. The leel of musicianship is high, actually even higher than most other bands in this genre. So what are you waiting for, buy this thing and allow it to hammer you into a piece of pulp. You know you want it...