Demon Eye
Tempora Infernalia
(Soulseller)

I don’t know where the line between hard rock and heavy metal resides. Certainly many bands have straddled the thin separator and spurred many debates. In the end, who cares, right? The doom genre will certainly throw its hat in the ring for ambiguous endeavors. Demon Eye, equipped with speedy rhythms and thick punchy riffs, cultivate their sound from Deep Purple as much as Pentagram, and Thin Lizzy as much as Sabbath. The band incorporates a live jam feel to their groove-infused, swinging riffs. Raucous drums propel a fevered delivery.

Demon Eye’s charging speed is their captivating element. I do cherish my slow doom. Monolord and Seprentine Path are classics to me. As we move through the beginning of the album, Demon Eye jump on tracks and never pump the brakes. “I’ll be Creeping” encompasses a steady drum beat with a leering quality but still pushes a tense rhythm. Erik Sugg plays guitar and sings. Maybe that factor of those elements stemming from the same person aid in the synchronization of ideas and execution.

“Poison Garden” finally allows the listener to recede and finds a slower groove. It trembles for three minutes, wavering in dark splendor. Then the heavier guitar crunches in with a NWOBHM gallop. Time changes have always been the most interesting faction of doom metal to me; maybe why Paranoid remains in the top slot for me. Demon Eye grasp onto a beauty of elastic qualities, firmly in their command. “Give Up the Ghost” portrays this well in its second half. A walking guitar move with drums tempered stagger and a cool bass. That final section drips with funk.

Lyrical subject matters cover all ranges of the dark and spooky. The menacing vibes that the guitar illustrates reflect the sinister topics of loss and depression. Titles like “Poison Garden”, “Listen to the Darkness”, “Give Up the Ghost”, “Black Winds”. “See the Signs” is an interesting and fun listen. The voice of Sugg warns of ill deeds, reminiscent of Ozzy’s common position (from “Hand of Doom” to “Suicide Solution”). Odes to netherworlds and mans’ ills are woven throughout Tempora Infernalia.

Tempora Infernalia is expertly executed. This surpasses most modern bands rehashing familiar motifs. As I always do, I find the crux of doom and stoner bands to be the bass. I want meandering bass lines that poke through the cloak of guitar chords, soaked in reverb. “Black Winds” comes barreling through the door with big balls. That bass pushes the song with drums in tandem to add a heavy sound, like Jack Bruce pushed Cream.

There is the essential “Planet Caravan” facsimile with the penultimate track, “Please, Father”. Solid track as we prepare for the closer, “Sons of Man”. Most songs are three to five minutes, no twelve minute expeditions here. All tracks feel fresh and furious. The urgency, reflected in the straight forward production (and well balanced), is impressive. Again, this correlates to the lyrical mindset of impending doom and yesterday’s mistakes seeking retribution. (Hutch)

RIYL : Sabbath, Bedemon, Trouble, Uncle Acid, The Oath, Hour of 13, Abdullah, with a little Judas Priest

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