As a person that finds Doom Metal to mostly be repetitive and lack luster, I wasn’t too thrilled to be recommended the band THROWN by friends in the Metal industry. There are only a few Doom Metal bands I relatively give the time of day to (CANDLEMASS is at the top) but I gave THROWN a chance and I listened to their debut album, “The Suicidal Kings Occult”. Low and behold, I ended up enjoying the album immensely. THROWN take the ideas of Doom Metal and approach it at a new angle so that the album doesn’t end up becoming a cliché doldrum.
THROWN don’t just play straightforward Doom Metal on “The Suicidal Kings Occult”. They mix the genre with some classic BLACK SABBATH approaches to song writing and push the boundaries by adding a slight Black Metal atmosphere through the harsh vocals. Granted the album does use the slow, heavy, and foreboding Doom Metal concepts as the basis for the album but THROWN push the music in a few new directions.
The guitar tone is heavy and slow (as most Doom Metal). As the album plays on, certain tracks garner some ferocious rhythms and speed. “Going Down” sounds like a faster BLACK SABBATH track from the music but when Pete Flesh comes in with his raspy and sinister vocals, one knows that the band is taking a darker road.
THROWN consists of only two members and both members previously worked together in a variety of other projects including MAZE OF TORMENT and DECEIVER. Both of their prior bands played Thrash Metal with various other influences (Death and standard Heavy Metal respectively). So it’s not all that surprising to hear some pretty impressive fret work incorporated into the riffing and the leads. After a slow and menacing intro, “The Suicidal Kings Occult” song builds into an impressive series of small solos that would sound more in place in a Death Metal song than a Doom Metal one.
Granted the album does still get a bit repetitive as it heads into the latter half. THROWN continue in their style but never really vary the songs enough to truly make each one distinctive. With multiple listenings I found myself enjoying the entire album rather than a few songs here and there. So new listeners, don’t give up on the album too early. It does become better with each additional spin.
Doom Metal may not be my forte but I find that this album does catch my fancy quite often. Fans of Doom Metal will definitely find elements to latch onto with “The Suicidal Kings Occult”, and maybe it might hook the occasional listener in too. Like me.
Songs to check out: “The Suicidal Kings Occult”, “Going Down”, “10 Years Of Nothing”.
(Online December 31, 2007)