Fuzzing faces off since 2013, the Gothenberg band Monolord have perfected the art of Doom/Sludge metal and boiled it down to a strict formula of heavy distortion, heavily affected lyrics, and turtle pace heavy bass that becomes a powerful force in the face of bands trying to cram more and more notes in via computer manipulation. Taking the roots of Sabbath and making something their own is a feat many have tried and failed at, but Monolord have defied the odds and that can be heard abruptly on their latest release Rust.
Appearing at Millvale/Pittsburgh’s Mr. Smalls, the band packed the crowd in at the venue’s Funhouse which fits about 175 people. It was a great atmosphere to see the band as fans “in the know” came to witness the band all the way from Sweden. Starting off with the slow burner “Icon”, Thomas J. Jäger (vocals and guitar) swayed his long locks to the heavy beat laid down by Mika Häkki on bass and drummer Esben Willems. The flanged out vocals of Jäger work so well with the deep down tone and rhythm that it becomes hypnotic. The band continued bringing on the pounding such tunes from their history as “Where Death Meets the Sea”, “Lord of Suffering”, “Rust”, and “Empress Rising”. A definite standout, not only for the performance but for the lyricism was “Dear Lucifer,” a song that professes, “Dear Lucifer, I’m sad to say I must go Dear Lucifer, I don’t believe anymore.” Monolord may not be everyone’s cup of tea, but they are definitely bringing some mind-blowing twists and turns to a genre that could always use more introspection and mindfulness rather than misogynistic grandstanding.
All photos © 2018 AWelding