“Created From Death”

By Dr. Abner Mality

BULL ELEPHANT is on the rampage again. It’s only been a few months since I encountered their self-titled debut, so these guys work quick. “Created From Death” is the middle part of a three album trilogy, so maybe they recorded everything at once.

The first record struck me as being prog-tinged doom metal. This time around, I think I’d reverse that description, this is more like doom-tinged prog. And I use the doom term loosely. I think of this mysterious outfit as being somewhat in the MASTODON vein, only a bit heavier. The first couple of tracks here didn’t particularly do much for me, but with cut three “Lebensraum”, things start to pick up and the rest of the record remains at that level. The songs here are a patchwork quilt of crunchy slow to medium riffs mixed with cleaner, lighter progressive rock. The vocals reflect the dichotomy as well, switching from roars to cleans. When BULL ELEPHANT hits their groove, they can really crush.  “Lebensraum” and “The Last Defilement” have some monstrously majestic riffs.

The lyrical concept here is batshit crazy.  Nazis, elephant zombies, witches, intelligent apes and World War II all figure prominently in the story, which is goofy enough to hold my interest. I’m not blown away by “Created From Death”, but I’m reasonably entertained by this ponderous pachyderm.