February 24, 2013

Mar de Grises - The Tatterdemalion Express (2004)

I figured it’s been quite some time since I’ve posted anything doom related, so I might just take a crack at it (contributing for sure to Chester’s untimely death_by_doom_reviews condition). Therefore, this month’s podium award will have to go the chilean outfit Mar de Grises and its ackwardly named debut release, The Truthful Dandelion Express!

Wait, what?! OH, it’s spelled Ta-tter-dema-lion? Like in tit-for-tat? Or just ti…

Ahhbutfuckit! The Express it is then!

What these guys play (hmm, didn’t I just say doom? Nvm…) it’s some kind of anything-goes combo which, for the lack of a better description, might not roll your canoe if you’re not in the specific mood for it. The compositions aren’t that technical, drums occasionally feel out of place, solos are few and far-between, vocals have that tortured death metal shriek to them and are, for the most part, completely incomprehensible, while in the background the rhythm guitar sometimes spews out riffs that wouldn’t be out of place on a nu-metal/metalcore release (see the sixth track, Be Welcome Oh Hideous Hell).

Oh, and there’s also that cacophony of sounds  that starts sometime after the four minute mark of the second track, To See Saturn Fall, over which is added some kind of a drum solo (because it really isn’t a solo per se, just a bunch of randomly thrown beats with no distinct pattern that probably even myself could conjure).

So what’s special about this album in order for it to warrant a brief spot on the Tzeeeac front page? Truthfully, I don’t really know. It might be the completely cool bass at the start of Storm, or the piano instrumental Self Portrait No. 1 (incidentally my favorite track in the whole album) or that at times, vocals sound eerily like early day Tristania. Those parts and the rest, complete with all the oddities that this record has to offer, manage somehow to hold my attention without making me want to skip tracks.

Oh, and I think the artwork deserves a special mention as well.  Two upper bodies united at the chest area while “walking” in different directions of a horizontal pole might enter the disturbing category of “images to put your kids to sleep on”, yet it completely satisfies my need for compulsory artful visualgasms.

And that, I say, is more than enough by my standards. Here’s a track, listen and maybe search for more.

All hail The Hurtful Pantsylion Oriental Express!

Wait, what?!?


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