|The cover art with very colorful shapes melting into each other, mushrooms, and the god Kernunos in a symbolic representation of the divine and nature, suggests to me that whatever is to be found on this CD is highly psychedelic. The music did nothing to disappoint when it comes to following up this prediction.|
The most psychedelic of the two bands is Queen Elephantine. In particular, the vocalist sounds like a Woodstock '68 preacher who has just tested all of his substances. The music is almost meditative in its repeating and void-like structure. To achieve this, they have in many tracks sacrificed the groove often associated with the rock part of psychedelic rock, yet the music remains very much in that direction. The effect is perhaps best described like this: Who cares if substance abuse is illegal or immoral, you can get pretty high on this alone. However, I can't help but wonder how on earth all of this relates to Ramesses...
While Queen Elephantine is a constant upper, Elder trip on far lower notes. They get their own high from grooving heavy stoner/doom metal. They bring out a lot of the good stuff from the genre, and their strongest point is definitely the very technical riffage and percussion. However, unlike most of their genre mates, this is not a laid back band in any way. They focus on dark and aggressive tracks with growled vocals. This is stoner/doom that doesn't just frown; it's sneering with vicious, shiny white teeth. In fact, they are the only stoner band that I've encountered thus far which can compete against sludge or death bands when it comes to being menacing.
Both bands are very good in what they do, and while being very different, when combined like this they provide a complete experience from top to bottom. In addition, the experience is quite unique as the bands are highly original, which can make it hard to find the right fan base to recommend it to. I think fans of extreme psychedelia would be the ones to fancy Queen Elephantine and those who fancy stoner/sludge mixtures can expect to find something to their liking from Elder. But perhaps the easiest way is to listen for yourself. The split is free for download here, at their record company.
1. Ramesses I
2. Ramesses II
3. Ramesses III
4. Ramesses IV
6. Red Sunrise
7. Black Midnight
Duration : Approx. 59 minutes
Visit the Elder bandpage.