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Haast's Eagled – II: For Mankind album review

Welsh doom predators Haast's Eagled feast on their forebears

With doom metal being arguably as popular now as it’s ever been, you’ve got to do something a bit special to stand out.

For this Newport trio, who in naming themselves after the largest eagle to have ever existed – one that fed on extinct flightless birds the size of Range Rovers – have perhaps picked the most ‘doom’ name ever, that something is peeling off layers from virtually every subgenre of doom and stitching them together into a sort of Ed Gein-like skinsuit made of doom and Neurot records releases.

The opening slog of Pyaaz Bhonghi, with its gnarled, droning guitars and distant-sounding vocals, for example, initially rumbles forth like the bastard son of Sleep and Conan before descending into passages or warm, melodious and, dare it be said, ‘emotional’ guitars and soaring vocals that call to mind Yob’s more delicate work. Elsewhere, the 20-minute Zoltar continues these Yob-isms, before it lumbers through a punishing, Neurosis-like middle section towards its sax-addled, ‘doom-lounge-jazz’ end. Similarly constructed closer White Dwarf even shoehorns in the ubiquitous bong sound effects.