(By Pat ‘Riot’ Whitaker, Lead Journalist/Writer, RiffRelevant.com)
When one first hears the name Destroyer Of Light, and they know nothing about the Lone Star state-based unit, they probably think Black Metal first thing right off.
I’m pretty sure that’s what I did way back when, five years or so ago, whenever it was that I first heard the band’s name. Truth is, while there is Black Metal of the hellishly unholy, church-burning kind, this is not THAT kind at all. But make no mistake, it is definitely a black metal all of its own.
See, what you get with the Austinites Steve Colca (guitar/vocals), Jeff Klein (bass), Keegan Kjeldsen (guitar) and Penny Turner (drums) is a darkness all to itself. The music this quartet craft on their new, third official release, “Chamber Of Horrors” (just released last Friday, July 14th via Heavy Friends Records) is opaque, bleak and non-translucent.
From the doomed headiness of the opening intro “Whispers Into The Threshold“, with its Sabbathian overtones and trippy way of making you hear voices, things quickly grow dark.
By the time “Into The Smoke” rolls in, you are enveloped in a cloak of nil visibility and even the lyrics reflect that state: “Inside these cavern walls, you can’t see a thing…” Indeed. As the essence of Iommi permeates the thickness, you are forced to feel your way along, as apocalyptic musical vibes emanate all around.
Every thing is bigger in Texas and that includes the doom as a Hessian-like heaviness impacts every note struck. One of the best examples of this is “The Virgin“, a horrifically haunting homage to Ol’ Scratch and those that serve him.
Pulverizing density resides within its slow crawling advance, while a multitude of vocal styles are explored. All of which is augmented with spoken word segments and samples to render the desired effect, your fright of old Slew Foot.
Yes, the quartet routinely explore a multiverse of differing styles and sounds, as best evidenced on the instrumental “Twilight Procession” or the incredible “Buried Alive“. Each is diversified so widely and incorporates such myriad movements within their audio-based misery that it is truly impressive.
For me personally, one song pulls it all together, provides the perfect sonic vehicle to get me where I want to go. “Lux Crusher” is an epic composition, one crafted with churning, opiate-like riffs and dirge-worthy rhythms. The bone shuddering drums pound and pound away, while the emotion-ridden vocals moan out their commiseration. The guitar solo alone in this number is an effect-heavy, epic fuzz fest able to make your speakers smoke.
If Destroyer Of Light‘s “Chamber Of Horrors” doesn’t place on nearly all of 2017’s year ending ‘Best Of…’ lists, then I’ll retire. I know that is a bold statement to make, but I’m that convinced… that certain. That what we have here is an album worthy of such adulation.
Perhaps you would like to put my words to the test now, at this very moment? Then you are indeed in luck, for you will find the new Destroyer Of Light, “Chambers Of Horrors“, streaming in full below via a Soundcloud embed.
Have at it, you.