If you have never heard of Run After To, then you are forgiven, for they were an obscure doom metal band from Italy who went straight from the underground into oblivion. They only had to releases: a demo in the form of Gjinn and Djinn from 1985 and a self-titled EP from 1988. But now, they have been brought back into the limelight by Shadow Kingdom Records in the form of the Run After To/Gjinn and Djinn-compilation which collects the demo and EP in one neat package.
The first three tracks constitute the 1988-EP and are more in the vein of traditional metal with a slight hint of Pentagram. And Saint Vitus at their fastest. The 12-minute opus 'My Name Is Man' revolves around a guitar riff reminiscent of Tony Iommi's more aggressive creations, accompanied by a dynamic bass line that reminds me of early 80s Steve Harris. Progressively oriented, his track also features a long mellow bridge and prominent keyboards in the chorus.
The remaining songs are much more characterized by doom and gloom. They are far from super slow, but they have the same minimalistic structure and sense of oppression that characterizes early Trouble, Saint Vitus, and Pentagram. Interesting 'Occultism' is strangely funky, while 'Walking on the Rainbow' is heavily groovy and eerily foreshadowing of grunge aesthetics. 'Visions' and 'Run After To' are the two most doom-laden tracks on the release, while 'Exorcism' kind of reminds me of Celtic Frost (which is not a bad thing).
The production on the three first tracks is pretty good, but the remaining ones sound very fuzzy and might be rather challenging to listeners whose ears are attuned to the pristine production value of contemporary metal. Still, the release should be very enjoyable to fans of old school doom metal and doom rock – in particular to those who enjoy Pentagram and Saint Vitus.
1. Who Cries for the Children
3. My Name is Man
5. Walking on the Rainbow
8. Run After To