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Without God – Siberian Tunes: Purple Clouds

Without God
Siberian Tunes: Purple Clouds
by Justin "Witty City" Wittenmeier at 14 November 2021, 2:28 AM

WITHOUT GOD is a doom metal band from Russia, who formed in 2008. "Siberian Tunes - Purple Clouds," is their third full length album. They have also released two demos, three EPs and a live album. This release comes just a month after their "Siberian Tunes: The Green Light" EP.  I'm not sure if there as any connecting story or theme between the two but I must hear the EP because I'm very impressed with "Purple Clouds."

Being doom, the band's sound is obviously heavy but this album features some truly thick and impenetrable riffage. Often times the guitar and bass just roll out of the songs in huge waves of concrete slabs. I love it. Stoner and psychedelic elements are also presence, mostly due to the guitar solos and vocals. Anton's vocal are loud and proud but can also be smoky and mysterious. His guitar playing, along with Alexander, goes from sludgy groove to Godzilla mega crunch all the way back to glacier slow riffs that are so heavy they are in danger of caving in the very air around them.

"Bad Seeds," combines everything I just mentioned in its opening moments. The atmosphere here is archaic and a little dangerous. Anton's howling vocals are the perfect sparing partner with these inescapable giant riffs. The rhythm section of Ivan's drums Scott's bass steer this ship through these dark, cold and muddy waters. I found myself doing a full body head bang dry heave during the guitar solo, those lead notes wrapping around me while the rest of the band pulls me down. I didn't have to say "please shove a sweet doom riff and psychedelic guitar lick into my ear drums" because the band does it for me on "Escape." Anton's wailing over the riffs hits the sweet spot between being pummeled and hallucinating and the foggy lead afterwards just pulls me in further into the haze. The rhythm section backing the second solo pushes forward, moving the very earth towards the song's end.

"Anxiety," sounds like the love child OF CANDLEMASS, DEEP PURPLE, SABBATH and PLACE OF SKULLS but somehow even more grimly and grueling in its desire to bring about mountainous doom. Anton's vocal rhythm in the song's first half are fire and work with the music—this is a fine example of musicians working together who are on the same page and each respect the other's abilities. This song is faster paced at times with sort biting rhythm work in between the bigger, wider riffs. This works pretty well and gives the song some energy that the drums run with.

What is it like when a bass guitar turns into a monstrous, living thing? I don't know either but the final track, "Winner," seems to know. This tack is dirty and abrasive—just pure filthy. The guitars and drums play off each other here so the song seems surprisingly chaotic in places. The last minute and a half is just stupid good doom metal: slow and grinding guitar with bass and drums that rattle speakers. "Siberian Tunes - Purple Clouds," has made me an instant fan of WITHOUT GOD. Russia is obviously a good inspiration for doom metal and this album is a wonderful creation born from the environment that is appropriately musically heavy cold and bleak as one could imagine.

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

4 Star Rating

1. Bad Seeds
2. Escape
3. Celebration
4. Mask
5. Anxiety
6. Not A Care
7. Song of the Stone
8. Winner
Anton Brovkin  - Vocals, Guitars
Ivan Kucherenko - Drums
Scott Simons - Bass
Alexander "The Whitey" - Guitars
Record Label: Solitude Productions


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Edited 28 November 2021

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