The shadows of Trouble, Cathedral, Candlemass, Saint Vitus, Witchfinder General, and of course Black Sabbath loom large on the sophomore release from Chilean doom act King Heavy, titled Guardian Demons. At six songs clocking in just under 45 minutes, Guardian Demons doesn't waste any time getting into the meat of this offering with the opening beast "Guardian Demon", a monstrous slice of classic styled doom, complete with massive riffs lumbering along and Luce's odd vocal inflection shaking the rafters. For some, his mix of operatic wailing and lower registered, baritone grumbling will be a 'love it or hate it' affair, but I'll give him credit, his style is certainly different and fits these epic doom tracks. "(Death is but an extreme form of) Narcosis" follows, a slower dirge dripping with distortion, the band taking the funeral doom route, before they launch into "Doom Shall Rise", the pace slowing down even further but the power & menace is still there. Things are taken into overdrive however for the galloping "Cult of the Cloven Hoof" (great title!), a potent slice of Candlemass styled doom, Luce soaring over double bass drumming and effective riffing. "Come My Disciples" is the longest track here at just over 10-minutes, and it packs quite a punch, as crushing guitar chords and pounding drums allow the vocals to dart in and out of the mix, tempos and arrangements changing up course periodically throughout this epic track for a wild ride of vintage styled doom. For the closer, fuzz laden bass, booming riffs, and menacing vocals drive the mid paced "As in a Nightmare" , with a tasty guitar solo and some rampaging drumming thrown in for good measure.
Plenty of headbanging fun to be found on Guardian Demons, King Heavy perfectly capable of creating some solid classic sounding doom that clicks on all levels. It might lack a little variety for some, and the vocals might not click for others, but overall this is a very solid sophomore release from the band.
See more about this release on our recent YouTube show!
1. Guardian Demon
2. (Death is but an extreme form of) Narcosis
3. Doom Shall Rise
4. Cult Of The Cloven Hoof
5. Come My Disciples
6. As in a Nightmare