Crucial Blast (USA):
Church Within is another new label that I just got hooked on - based out of Germany, the label only has a handful of releases out but all of them are stunning pieces of progressive doom/sludge, each with a unique take on slow n' low heaviness. The first disc we picked up from the stash of Church Within jams that we just got in this week is a brand new full length from the Dutch band Tekhton, Summon The Core. The band used to be called Lahar but found out that the name was already claimed by another band; they managed to change it to the superior Tekhton just in time to lay down the seven songs of monstrously beautiful, trance-inducing prog-doom on this album. The pace is slow, slow, slow, and Tekhton have clearly spent alot of time listening to classic doom metal like Cathedral, Saint Vitus. But they also incorporate cool dissonant chords and long, extended instrumental passages of pretty pastoral arpeggios and delicate melody, but where alot of bands that use quiet melodic parts to build up into loud, epic crescendos, Tekhton general use them wind down a song that started off crushing. Long drawn out droning riffs alternate with more traditional Sabbathian hooks and some angular twists and turns, and the vocals are a strained gruff roar that reminds me of someone but I can't put my finger on it. At various points Tekhton remind me of Melvins, Cathedral, and Mogwai, a combination of quiet dreamy instrumentals, lumbering intricate sludge rock and primordial doom, but they don't actually sound like any of 'em, instead coming out with a debut that stands as one of the more creative sludge/doom albums of '07. The package for Summon The Core stands out too, with a tasteful package design consisting of beautiful photos of seaside cliffs, minimally arranged. Recommended.