“To The Concrete Drifts”

By Dr. Abner Mality

Misery is manifold on this debut effort from  Michigan band Fell Ruin. The many forms of depressing music are on display during the five morose tracks here. Doom, black metal, sludge and Gothic tones collide to make this a really dolorous listening experience.

With weird titles like “Spy Fiction Folds in Ready Streets” (HUH?) and “To Wither The Golden Rose in Bloom”, I feared an assault of arty avant-garde nonsense. Thankfully, the music here is more straightforward than that. Opener “Respire” is just a brief, low key instrumental.  “The Lucid Shell” then comes roaring in with a wall of thick, sludgy sonic lava. Killer doomy riffs here, picking up to a quicker pace later in the tune. Very good stuff and the best track here.  “Spy Fiction in Ready Streets” is up next and now the black metal kicks in with some very unique riffs mixed with a kind of Gothic doom. “To Wither the Golden Rose in Bloom” is angular and jerky but Gothic as well, kind of like My Dying Bride colliding into something like early Voi Vod. An unpredictable album so far! It winds up with the long and dragging “And Choke On Noctural Breath”, which again mixes British melodic doom with occasional thrash and ambient bits. This last one is a tad too long and overdone to suit me.

On the whole, “To The Concrete Drifts” is an unpredictably miserable journey through darkened crypts of musical depression. A fine addition to the I, Voidhanger label.