Sunday, 13 April 2014

Double Post - Church of Misery

'Master of Brutality & The Second Coming'
Church of Misery

Review by Elek Malcolm-Madill

Genre/s: Doom Metal, Space Rock
For Fans Of: Trouble, Pentagram, Black Sabbath

Imagine if Black Sabbath kept to their iconic sound of thick, lush guitar riffs, grinding bass, and vibrant drumming- but decided to make all of their songs about infamous serial killers instead and you've basically got Japan's Church of Misery. I couldn't choose between which album I thought was better so I decided to try something I haven't done before and post both Master of Brutality and The Second Coming, the band's first and second albums. An obvious play on "Master of Reality" by Black Sabbath, Master of Brutality's style and Master of Reality's musical similarities are almost staggering, but it never feels like an attempt at generic reproduction. What struck me most about both albums is that they start out extremely strong, and actually manage to keep that feeling going through most of the albums. I loved the gruff, deep vocals that mark the main difference between Ozzy's melodic vocals in Sabbath and Church of Misery's general aesthetic- let me put it this way, if a smoker's cough could sing this is what it would sound like. Also adding pieces of atmospheric synths on tracks like "Red Ripper Blues (Andrei Chikatilo)" Church of Misery manages to keep things fresh throughout their works- even adding in creepy soundbites of news broadcasts detailing the different mass murderers' crimes that fit perfectly- I especially loved them on the opening tracks to both albums and to the title track "Master of Brutality (John Wayne Gacy). All in all, Church of Misery does a great job at shelling out their own unique take on the classic Sabbath style and aesthetic with these two masterpieces of groovy, serial-killer doom that I highly recommend checking out.

Master of Brutality:

1. Killafornia (Ed Kemper)
2. Ripping into Pieces (Peter Sutcliffe)
3. Megalomania (Herbert Mullin)
4. Green River
5. Cities on Flame (Blue Öyster Cult cover)
6. Master of Brutality (John Wayne Gacy)
7. Bent Poles Inside

The Second Coming:

1. I, Motherfucker (Ted Bundy)
2. Soul Discharge (Mark Essex)
3. Red Ripper Blues (Andrei Chikatilo)
4.  Filth Bitch Boogie (Aileen Wuornos)
5.  One Way...Or Another (Cactus cover)
6. Candy Man (Dean Corll)
7. El Topo