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Cough : An Introduction To The Black Arts (Split with The Wounded Kings)

Cough and The Wounded Kings deliver an excellent Stoner Doom exercise.

Let's assume these two bands don't need any introduction and let's proceed to the core of the split (I'mnot in the mood for any longer palaver, truth be told)

First the Coughís part:

Slow slimey Doom and Stoner-ish Sludge crossed by howling vomited vocals and sustained by a rhythmic full of fuzz and droney threat. Thereís a passage in the middle of the track with that clear voice drenched in reverb.; itís full of bitterness and not in tune, but, hell, this is Sludge and not Gothic Metal, so who cares, really?

The riffs are dynamic and help to induce a hypnotic trance-like vibe, they mutate and expand through gloomy dreadful vrooming bass and psychedelic guitar. Bleak and broken leads, they wind through the song like deliquescent mantras; all eventually collapses in a big crunchy void, still keeping a sense of magnitude. Gurgling savage shrieks that echo in the background while the guitars growl their doom in a magnificent crushing and dolorous trudging dirge.

All the rhythmic is put in the forefront while the voice howls behind, what makes Cough a real devastating beast. It ends in droning notes, a long agony, like the exhausted breath of the dying monster, like the last chokes of a rusty war-machine that has seized upÖ Thereíre enough variations in this song to make it more than interesting. This is just great.

The Wounded Kingsí part:

Thereís something in the whirling little rhythm that immediately carry you into a fantastical occult ceremonial where Satan dances in the bottom of a bottle of old red wine and teenage virgins offer the small of their back to chickensí blood. Magic fills the air. Black magic, heady and hypnotic.

The band has found their own course, you canít misatke their sound, itís crossed with a lithurgic vibe that is all embodied in the voice. What a voice! I love it! You know what it sounds like: haunted, incantatory and shamanic. What is really great in that song is the tension that runs underneath, it all sounds quite simple , but there are rich dynamics, and like a lurking threat covered with suffocating incense fumes. Some twisted guitarís lead, like thick volutes of brown smoke add to the psychedelic aura of the whole. It is an ominous march toward the occult.

The Wounded Kings have carved a stone of their own, Far from the monolithic nonchalance of Electric Wizard, the Ďotherí Brits are delivering one hell of a music any Stoner Doom fan should support.

And the conclusion will be as concise as the introductory first paragraph: this split album is a must-have.

Reviewer's rating: 9/10


Tracklist :
1. The Gates of Madness
The Wounded Kings
2. Curse of Chains

Duration : Approx. 35 minutes

Visit the Cough bandpage.

Reviewed on 2010-12-01 by Bertrand Marchal
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