(By Pat ‘Riot’ Whitaker, Senior Writer/Journalist, RiffRelevant.com)
One of my favorite traditional styled doom bands, Italy’s Bretus, will soon return with a brand new offering in this month of June. That offering is entitled ‘...From The Twilight Zone‘ and it will arrive via the Endless Winter label.
To get a bit further into the details, the new release is a conceptual album, where each song is inspired by a classic horror film. Bretus, or more specifically, guitarist and vocalist Ghenes, vocalist Zagarus, bassist Azog, and drummer Striges are the ideal band and players for such a grand undertaking (in my opinion).
I say such because Bretus, who are in their seventeenth year of existence this year, have always steeped themselves in occult images and lyrics. One need only refer to 2015’s ‘The Shadow Over Innsmouth’, 2014’s self-titled LP, or 2012’s ‘In Onirica‘ to grasp this reality.
The descent into the unknown begins here with a thunderstorm, acoustic music and some eerie organs as ‘Terror Behind The Mirror‘ unfolds. It suddenly breaks into a monstrous riff and tumult of drums and organ stills. Once on keel, some very animated vocals cue in, as the music reaches a very Sabbath-y vibe. See, Black Sabbath are where most of our doom originates and the boys from Bretus are clearly disciples of such.
Take the full-on doom deluge delivered via tracks ‘ln The Vault‘, the amazing ‘Murder‘ and ‘The Creeping Flesh‘. The latter two are just stellar, stand out songs with Murder being a very uptempo throwback to the days of proto-doom. It powers away like some careening locomotive and then breaks into fiercely bluesy grooves.
The Creeping Flesh starts with a rather appropriate film sample, before delving into somewhat furious metallic styling. It may just be me, but I get a certain Mercyful Fate/King Diamond feel from this song, along with some other moments on the album. That, of course, is a damned fine thing, too.
Several of those moments permeate the ‘Old Dark House‘, a true doom epic sounding song. The section where the vocals take the spotlight, while the music dies down, becoming barely audible and sparse is grandiose. The song is followed by one of the more experimental, well textured tracks here, ‘Danza Macabra‘. Another heavy cut that delves into slower-paced doomy excess, laden with beautifully melancholy melodics.
Things end on the new album with the magnificent instrumental ‘Lizard Woman‘, a lengthy foray into doom psychedelia. Thunderous bass lines rumble throughout the song, before it takes on an enthralling rhythmic path. Lighter acoustic touches enhance things nicely, as do the organs and synth flourishes. They enter heavily mid-way after some fiery guitar antics. Oh, and the instrumental designation maybe challenged since there are some very basic, airy and eerie, trippy as hell vocalization touches laid down for a brief moment.
Just as they have always done, Bretus are the living, breathing embodiment of modern doom with traditional influences. ‘…From The Twilight Zone‘ continues that tradition with formidable heaviness and great grooves.
They take inspiration from what has come before and instill it with their own superb styling. The result is another intense, powerful album from the always bad-ass Bretus!