Sunday, April 7, 2013

High Priest of Saturn (Svart Records SVR192)

High Priestess of Saturn is a new Norwegian three piece band. They released a demo on bandcamp in 2011. So what is in store? The record has two long songs on each side of slow heavy riffing doom with a lot of organ and echoed female (nearly spoken word) vocals. Some of it sounds like it was recorded to sound like you are in a church. Side A starts with the song Protean Towers. It is a pretty slow doomy track with dreamy vocals to start, reminds me of Candlemass at their slowest (the guitar), but nicely the mid-section a really nice guitar section (double tracked) is played to compliment the organ, which is not only used for atmosphere. They bring the track down to very slow doom ending. Kraken Mare keeps the mood very dark but the pace is slightly faster and they avoid the “doom” guitar riff for quite some time with just organ, drums and bass and a different guitar. It does turn into a doom track in the end and has a longer vocal section although I don’t find her vocals very emotion, interesting, powerful, there are just sort of there. Pity as it would really add something. The track slowly evolves and includes a short guitar solo and longer organ section played by Ole. It is time to flip the record and hear the Crawling King Snake (nothing to do with the John Lee Hooker song!). Like the previous songs it takes the slow doomy road with the organ playing the most interesting role usually. Martin has a pretty cool more bluesy solo, which is double tracked again making it a bit more psychedelic but again this part is far too short before they go back into the same basic doom laiden theme as where the song started but with some nice organ playing. On Mayda Insula is the last track starts off with a nice guitar part as the track seems like a bit of a jam (which is cool….) and also ends in a very cool jam making this by far the best track on the record. I love the organ on this record and if the band did not have this it would be a completely normal DOOM record. I sure hope they have Ole live as the organ is one thing that sets the band a bit aside from other female lead DOOM acts. Live Martin might also take some longer cool solos so I look forward to see the band at the Heavy Days in Doomtown. Nice artwork, good sound and packaging on the record.

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