Gradations of Morbidity:
So I received a pleasant surprise in the mail today from my buddy Bert-Rene. It was the latest CD from his band TEKHTON dubbed "Summon The Core".
I was a bit apprehensive about reviewing this CD prior to inserting it into my CD player. I mean, what if it sucked? How would I break the news to my buddy Bert and would he think I was a dick afterwards? Thankfully this release is topnotch and I don't have to worry about it. But I was sweating there for a minute.
Just for clarification some of you may recall the self described "post sludge" doom band from the Netherlands called LAHAR right? Well LAHAR and TEKHTON are apparently one in the same. Somewhere along the line the band had a name change and somehow I must've missed the update. There was an update right? Anyway, these guys have been around for a long time and I'm really glad to see that they finally have a full length release on their hands. And a good one at that.
I really like the layout and artwork on this CD. Very clean and tastefully done with photos apparently taken by Bert-Rene himself. The imagery however is not very representative of the crushing music contained on the disc but that's no big deal. As for the recording itself all I can say is WOW!!!. I can only assume that these guys didn't have a million dollar recording budget but you'd never know it from listening to the disc. Everything sounds great on this record from the heavy to the mellow, fucking flawless!
Musically TEKHTON for me is kind of hard to label. Clearly doom but presented in a way that I've not really heard before (most of the time). Bert's vocals have sort of a gurgully texture to them and his delivery sometimes seems as if it was punk inspired. Think old Fear with a bit more bite. The chordal movements and guitar lines are all very doom with a slight sludge flavor. I also hear hint's of old Cathedral in some of the guitar work. Another element these guys incorporate are melodic guitar parts that seem sort of Mogwai inspired. Ordinarily this would probably bother me because so many bands are doing it but TEKHTHON puts their own spin on it and these moments on the album are a bit dirtier and darker then anything you'll hear from Mogwai.
At this point all I can say is that "Summon the Core" was well worth the wait and that I'm genuinely very impressed with this release. I was prepared to give it a bad review if I had to, friend or no friend. But that was not in the cards and I guess I get to keep my old friend and the rest of the doom community gets a very solid record to enjoy!
Oh, and let's not wait another 5 years for the next release okay boys?