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Qaalm: Resilience and Despair

There are certain genres of music that I am hard pressed to find an album or band that I dislike. One of them is Doom Metal. There’s something about the slow, sludgy guitar riffs and overall evil atmosphere that suckers me in just about every time. Certain bands go a step further, and completely blow my mind!

Qaalm’s album, Resilience and Despair is one of the most impressive metal debuts I have heard in a while. Not only does it check off every box that I look for in a Doom metal album, but it also adds an even darker layer of blackened terror to create a ferocious and harrowing hour and nine-minute experience.

Stylistically speaking, the instrumentation falls into the category of Doom metal. The riffs are sludgy and huge, the drums are thunderous and ritual-like, and the overall tone is very gloomy and evil. I also like the addition of melodic guitar lines on a track like “Cosmic Descent”, which bring more complexity to the table. What really stands out to me above everything else is Pete Majors’ vocals. My favorite moments of his singing are his Black metal shrieks. They are terrifying and demonic, causing chills through my body every time. He also perfects Death metal growls as well on tracks like “Reflections Doubt” and “Lurking Death”. There are some clean vocals occasionally, which serve as an interesting contrast to the chaos with a gentle but mournful sound.

The album has four songs, and they range from 14 to 19 minutes long. I find them all to be extremely strong and awe-inducing epics. My favorite track on the album is the second song, “Existence Asunder”. I find it to be the most in your face and heavy song, and it also has the most of Pete Majors’ shrill screams. The band released a music video for this track (I linked their Bandcamp at the bottom, which has it). It is edited down to eight minutes, but it’s awesome to watch the band in action. I also especially love the closing track, “Lurking Death”. It starts off a bit more atmospheric than the others, but amps up suddenly with one of Majors’ most chilling screams of the whole album. The riffing on this one is also fantastic, and it’s a mystical and brutal ending to a mesmerizing listening experience.

Overall, I can’t even come close to having a complaint about this amazing album. The production is humongous, the songs are all extremely strong, and the band absolutely kills it! I am so glad that I got the chance to check these guys out, and I see this album being a frequent part of my listening rotation. I think that with the right promotion and more amazing content to follow, this band could be huge in the Extreme metal scene. I’m rooting for them big time, and I encourage you all to check them out too!

Qaalm is:
Pete Majors- Lead Vocals
Brock Elmore- Guitar and Vocals
Henry Derek Elis- Lead Guitar and Vocals
Dave Ferrara- Drums
David Huet- Bass

Track Listing:
1) “Reflections Doubt”
2) “Existence Asunder”
3) “Cosmic Descent”
4) “Lurking Death”

Added: March 25th 2022
Reviewer: Ryan Gavalier
Related Link: Band @ Bandcamp
Hits: 845
Language: english

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