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Reeking Aura – Blood and Bonemeal

Reeking Aura
Blood and Bonemeal
by Dave "That Metal Guy" Campbell at 15 July 2022, 7:04 AM

REEKING AURA is a NY/NJ based Death/Doom Metal band in the old school tradition comprised of known scene veterans from Long Island and NYC. “Blood and Bonemeal” is a concept album centered around the caretaker of a desolate agricultural property and that persons struggles with morbid psychosis. Musically, the band sought to further explore the possibilities of a three-pronged lead guitar team, while the revamped rhythm section held down the bombastic wall of sound. The album contains seven tracks.

“Remnant of Obstinate Rank (Flooding Ratholes)” is the first cut. From the opening notes, this song sounds closer to the Death Metal genre than the Doom Metal genre. The vocals are done traditionally, and the riff is fairly elementary. A few Doom elements mix in here and there, but aren’t the star of the show. “Blood and Bonemeal” is more of the same. You can’t really hear the three guitars working together, since they all play the same riff. Oh what you could do with three guitarists…they never reach their potential, unfortunately. The ending sequence is nice, however. “Seed the Size of a Spider’s Eye” is a shorter blast of Death Metal chaos. The lead guitar work here is nice, but the steady sound really never gets off the ground, with another simple and uninventive riff.

“Harvesting the Hatchet” features some rumbling elements and a bit more of an original sound. Now this I can get behind. The lead guitar work here is pretty solid, whipping into a frenzy by the end. More Doom elements come in at the end, but this placement just doesn’t work very well. “A Vegetative Mush That Melts Among the Shelves Lined with Meats of Indeterminate Origin” is a mouthful of a title. It’s another short burner with a fast-paced riff and another elementary riff. It’s a shame too, because what other bands wouldn’t do to be able to work with three guitarists. But, the vocals are different here, with effects laden in them. “Pyramid Shaped Plow/The Caretaker” is a slower-moving song with an opening vocal note that is held for what seems like forever. The pace quickens with a sprinkling of Doom Metal, but again, rather than these odd placements, if they could work it into the music, it would be a more unique sound. “Grublust” closes the album. The slow, Doomy riff means the band is finally getting it. It strikes the ground with thuds that can be heard for miles, but does not last very long.

As a self-proclaimed genre snob, I would just say that this album is too close to the Death Metal side and weak on the Doom Metal game. What you get as a result is just another uninspired Death Metal album, much like the thousands that are out there now. Bands working in this genre cannot rely on their musicianship alone. They must go after originality as well. Unfortunately, they just don’t get there.

Songwriting: 4
Musicianship: 7
Memorability: 2
Production: 7

2 Star Rating

1. Remnant of Obstinate Rank (Flooding Ratholes)
2. Blood and Bonemeal
3. Seed The Size of a Spider's Eye
4. Harvesting The Hatchet
5. A Vegetative Mush That Melts Among the Shelves Lined with Meats of Indeterminate Origin
6. Pyramid Shaped Plow/The Caretaker
7. Grublust
Tom Anderer – Bass
Ryan Lipynsky – Guitars
Terrell Grannum – Guitars
Rick Habeeb – Guitars
Will Smith – Vocals
Sam Shereck – Drums
Record Label: Profound Lore Records


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