Article By: Pat ‘Riot’ Whitaker ‡ Edited By: Leanne Ridgeway
Yes, after a couple of earlier EP efforts, the trio of guitarist and vocalist Ken Wohlrob, drummer Joe Wood, and bassist Hal Miller have decided the time has come.
The time is right, indeed, for unleashing their seven-song ‘Bleed The Days‘ album, produced and mixed by Joe Kelly and Kol Marshall, recorded at Suburban Elvis Studios, and mastered by none other than Tony Reed himself at his HeavyHead Recording Co.
The three-headed beast known as Eternal Black wields an obliterating weapon of ass destruction. In other words, they will mercilessly pummel and kick your ass without refrain, via the sonic stomping captured here. In typical EB fashion, the guys have yet again masterfully compiled their chaotic sound into a properly channeled assault of epic proportions.
The crafting of sludge, the condensing of doom, and ultimately, the abject dispensation of monstrous stoner metal heaviness will hammer you senseless. Impacted within the dense underbody of these seven tracks are Earth-shuddering riffs, like those of the intro song “The Lost, The Forgotten And The Undying“.
As always, those riffs are the ever-endless fuel source for the Eternal Black generator. Once poured out, the piston-like rhythm section then provides the backup to power them onward. Just give an ear to such heavyweights as the woeful “Stained Eyes On A Setting Sun” or the groovened title track “Bleed The Days“.
Never ones to sit idle on their stock ‘n trademarked sound, I also picked up on some obvious experimentation from the guys on this album. One of the most evident is Wohlrob’s use of heavier vocals at times, ones with a deeper baritone depth to them. I think the clearest example is provided on one of my favorite selections, “Snake Oil And Coffin Nails“. The vocals deliver while the Iommian inertia of said song remains paramount as Wood’s drumming provides a framing display keeping it all in place.
That song is followed up with a pair of back-to-back tracks that epitomize what we will refer to as the “then and now” of Eternal Black. We have the “then”, the traditional elements and sound the band has given us, via the crushing “Sea Of Graves“. The spinal-shattering body blow of a viciously thick ode comprised of the truest of doom essences. One where Miller’s bass lines are so destructively heavy they can reduce structures to powdered rubble.
That is epilogued by the “now”, the progression of the band, the willpower to experiment as unfurled with the ambient-enhanced “Into Nothing“. The melodically hypnotic instrumental song is rife with haunting character and an inherent mystique to it. Once heard, you will not soon forget the vibes evoked by it, the uncertain, unknown hinted at and held over you within its confines.
In fact, that should be the desired and resulting effect that this entire album will render unto you upon hearing. It is as certain as death itself, with the album-closing “All Gods Fail“, the lumbering stroke of doomed finality that provides the gradual, eventual end to Eternal Black‘s ‘Bleed The Days‘.
In my opinion, this album is – thus far – the definitive masterpiece opus from the blackened brotherhood from Brooklyn, as it should be. Making its lasting mark in the annals of doom history, as well as scarring your very soul in the process.