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Venus Sleeps - Remnants

Venus Sleeps
by Justin "Witty City' Wittenmeier at 27 January 2020, 4:36 AM

VENUS SLEEPS is a Psychedelic Doom band from Dublin, Ireland.  “Remnants,” is their second full length album; they have also released a Demo. I haven’t heard their other material, but this album is a bulldozer of a Doom album.   In terms of heavy factor, this album is monumental. Steven and Sie’s guitar tone is both razor sharp and extremely dense.  Being heavy tends to come with the territory of Doom Metal but so many people assume that Death/Doom and Funeral Doom are the styles that bring about the darkest, most weighty material.  VENUS SLEEPS’ “Remnants,” begs to differ.

Before I dig into the album, I must mention their drummer Fergal—this guy is a beast of a human.  Throughout the album’s 53-minute run time, he just hammers his performance in like it is the last thing he will ever do with the rest of his life.  I don’t want to make it sound like he is overbearing—nothing could be further from the truth.  In actuality, he actually forms a very strong backbone, but he is just so relentless in his performance—not that he is going a thousand miles a minute, but he is always busy and using the song to work to his advantage.

After about a minute of clean guitar, the damn explodes in the form of guitars and bass so goddamn sweltering that I was taken aback.  The melodic tinges that pepper the riffs after such an intense display show-off the band’s Psychedelic side.  The result of this melody so well mixed into the band’s intense style of Doom is damn near trance like.  While listening, my mind just became trapped into this…swirl of Doom.  Sie’s vocals are definitely more on the traditional side, a clean wail that works decent enough with the music and somewhat offsets how towering the riffs can be.  The guitar solo really impressed me as well, very methodical without being too flashy.   The movement after the solo is near Sludge in its delivery, reminding me of bands like CULT OF LUNA, CROWBAR, and even MASTODON during their more intense days.

Dust,” was the first song released for the album and it isn’t hard to hear why.  That main riff is just straight up mean and commanding.  The vocal delivery, especially the chorus, even manages to throw in some hooks.  The riffs grow outward and just keep building until the song is just this one big sonic temple of Doom. The album’s centerpiece is the near 12-minute song “The Temples Shade.”  Feedback and a low rumbling starts the track off with well-built anticipation.  Steady, head banging guitars lead the way into some more melodic yet psychedelic passages.  Right before the vocals kick in, the song drops in tone, letting the riffs get deeper than ever.  The middle portion and the last few minutes are both highlighted by Tob’s bass, adding that sweet low end that makes everything even more…well, Doomier.

The final track, “Call of the Sun,” is one of my favorites on the album because it really balances how heavy and psychedelic the band can be.  In addition, some of the album’s best riffs, and drum work, feature in the track and it flows very well.  The middle portion is especially spacey, almost Sci-Fi in its near alien landscape.  The music flows so well into and out of this particular passage that its pulled off without a hitch. The sonic excess of “Remnants,” is impressive, as are the song writing skills involved in pulling it off.  Some of the songs tend to be a little longer than needed but you could also just view that is more chance to bang your head.

Songwriting: 8
Musicianship: 8
Memorability: 8
Production: 8

4 Star Rating

1. Pillars
2. Forgotten Sentinel
3. Dust
4. Tides of Ash
5. The Temples Shade
6. Call of the Sun
Sie Carroll – Vocals, Guitars
Fergal Malone – Drums
Steven Anderson – Guitars, Vocals
Tob Swift – Bass
Record Label: Independent


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