Metal Bulletin Zine (est. 2006) (Washington state, USA), 203 issues so far.
pdfs at https://issuu.com/metalbulletinzine
Saturday, February 3, 2018
Monolith Cult (review by MMB)
Gospel of Despair
November 17th, 2017
I found this album interesting because this doom band features a crooner and it’s quite an experience to hear it. The singing, in my opinion, puts them in a good situation for fans looking for something different from the usual big-belly yelling hollering by bearded guys who seem good at screamgrowling. The crooning should win over fans who are not against so-called clean or melodic singing. Actually, to be honest, I do believe the singing is one of the most attractive elements of this album. It’s big, melodic and melancholic crooning shamelessly singing about the things that doom bands love to do, like misery, depression, loneliness and confusion and everything else that is south of happiness.
The band, being a bit more traditional than the sludge and drone sounds, relies a lot on the riff to do the work. The guitar sound goes for a heavy tone, as heavy as possible and taking right to the doorstep of sludge, but it stops right about there, because riffs are still very important to this music. Just as important as the heavy riffs is the melodic nature of the songs. The guitar is heavy, but there are hooks, it’s not that one-riff-per-hour method that some doom bands do. In other words, these are songs in the traditional doom style.
This is doom, but it’s not a downer. It is upbeat and the drummer does real drumming and has to be in a groove for the songs. I am pleased with the band’s interpretation and execution of doom. This one is a keeper.