Tuesday, February 7, 2017
King Woman : " the Image of Suffering"
There is an even more dream like haze cast over the doom-gaze of the band's debut full length than we found on their previous ep. This hits a sweet spot for me as it once again proves you don't have to adhere to the typical trapping of metal in order to be heavy. She does allow for some of her backing vocal tracks to to into more of a scream and the guitar carries the dense distortion of doom. By the second song it's obvious that clearly this album is going to take them to the next level of recognition. It's for fans of Chelsea Wolfe, who didn't find "Abyss" to be heavy enough. There is a thick lethargy layered over "Shame" the song might have a woeful drag to both the vocals and the guitar , but it is very compactly written and sprawl out over the five minute mark.
Kristina's sense of melodies is much more refined on " Hierophant" they do allow this one to unfurl into eight minute. Midway into the song it drops down into a more minimal and atmospheric. There is a more rock to feel to "Worn" that could be one of Bruce Springsteen's more depressing moments. Kristina's alto really holds a sense of her personality to it. While her voice can often sit back into a ghostly wall re-verb, she is still her own person not really jumping on the Chelsea Wolfe bandwagon. Her pained alto often holds more of a moan than a croon to it. She goes into a higher register cooing at the beginning of "Manna". The verse find her returning to a more contemplative place. The drums picks up the pace as the guitar churns out a more metallic backdrop to this one.
She goes into more of chant in certain passages of "Hem" which feels like it pack the most punch of any song on the album given the weight of the chords striking. It's more up beat temp wise than doom but carries an similar emotional heft. Overall this album starts off with a dreamier coating to and wakes into a more grounded powerhouse, but each side this band shows is valid and feels real. Kristina's vocal pull the song writing together and make this an album that I want to dig deeper into, so it gets a 10 rather easily.