CARDINAL WYRM is a Doom Metal band that is based out of the Bay Area in California. Nathan Verrill and drummer/singer, Pranjal Tiwari, started the band in the year 2009. The main two architect of this band met and started jamming together in the year 2007 and they released their debut full-length studio album entitled, “Another Holy Trinity”, in the year 2013 with Marcelle Marais on bass guitar duties. The critically acclaimed album “Black Hole Gods” soon followed in the year 2014 with Rachel Roomian on bass guitar and organ. “Cast Away Souls”, released in the year 2016, has HAMMERS OF MISFORTUNE guitarist, Leila Abdul-Rauf, joining the band and taking over bass and backing vocal duties. The name of the band is inspired by the Wyrm Mythos that occultist Godwinson Asquith Stanley created. The band plays an eclectic mix of traditional Doom Metal mixed with Punk melodies and Progressive elements. After the release of their sophomore effort, the band toured the US and Canada all the while writing material for their next album. The album has strong occult leanings and songs talk about depression. The band has employed Greg Wilkinson to produce their latest effort.
The album trudges into life with the eerie track, “Silver Eminence”. Almost Gregorian and Gothic in nature, this track is over 7 minutes in run time. At around the 2 minute mark, the song suddenly startles and picks up tempo. The sludge filled song takes the listener over various desolate landscapes before an abrupt end.” The Resonant Dead” is the next track and it is a haunting one at that. It begins with a simple progression before a thunderous riff awakens the track. The song has backing vocals of Leila Abdul-Rauf and it adds an extra dimension to the song. The bass melody at the midpoint of the song ushers the song in an almost Prog direction. The layered vocals, added with a memorable riff, make this song the high point of the album for me. “Lost Orison” is a relatively shorter song that is less than 4 minutes in runtime and is an acoustic song and a duet between the male and female voices that is set to acoustic guitar. A delightful and mournful song, it is something of an odd song nestled smack in the middle of the record. “After the dry years” closes out the album and is the second longest track on the album. It is a melancholy affair with thick bass notes that make the song doom laden and grave. Eerie and unearthly, the song revolves around a simple melody with almost choir-like vocals. Midway through the track, the melody gets heavy and contains spoken word bits. The track is an appropriate culmination to an album of uncanny and supernatural tracks.
This album is a treat for Doom Metal fans and the band not only plays doom laden tracks but also have upbeat fast riffs to keep the headbangers interested. Lyrically, the songs deal with occultism and the band paints a bleak picture all the while managing to keep the listener in a trance. In some places, the lead vocals remind one of Peter Steele and his deep baritone style of singing. This album is as experimental as it is glorious. The album is grandiose and epic with some personal experiences thrown in and there are definite moments of sadness. This is an album of 6 cosmic gloomy songs and is definitely worth a listen.