Earth Ship – Hollowed album review

Sludgy Germans Earth Ship uncover some melody in their monstrosity

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The moniker suggests the sort of druggy jam-rock best played in open fields for acid-powered hordes of shirtless men and twirling girls in gingham dresses.

In fact, this bruising German metal crew have spent the past six years conjuring a wholly modern and powerfully corrosive amalgam of death metal, grunge and glacially paced doom that calls to mind an off-the-rails Lamb Of God-meets-Alice In Chains collaboration.

Formed by Jan Oberg, former drummer of The Ocean, the band’s 2014 opus, Withered, was an uncompromising manifesto of sonic devastation. Hollowed pushes their sound into richer, more melodic territories without sacrificing any of the startling heaviness that underpins their first two records. Reduced To Ashes showcases their penchant for sludgy, monolithic riffs, while Castle Of Sorrow seethes with gale-force tempos, topped off with bursts of groove metal. Yet beyond the aggression, fragile lyrics gorgeously illustrate that within bleak, darkened realms you can find things of terrible beauty.