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SLOMATICS - Futurians: Live At Roadburn

I feel like the Slomatics are a little underrepresented in this blog. I've used them as a reference / comparison a couple of times, but I haven't written about any release of them. Especially their newest studio album, last year's "Future Echo Returns" deserves some loud praise. Yet I was a late buyer, so it didn't fall under my rule of mainly reviewing music which was published in the current year, so I postponed it in favor of many other texts.

But since we're here now, let me quickly honor "Future Echo Returns" by saying that it is not only one of the finest pieces of ultra fuzzy sludge doom you can find out there, but also that its last track "Into The Eternal" is nothing less than the doom metal equivalent of Queen's "In the Lap Of The Gods... revisited". Check it out, it's fucking grand!

Of course I have written one Slomatics review, because I've seen them this April at the Roadburn Festival. That paragraph was relatively brief though, so I am happy to add a sentence or two now with the upcoming release of this live record next Friday.

SLOMATICS - Futurians: Live At Roadburn (clear vinyl LP) (2017)

Damn, this soup of fuzz and distortion the Irish trio creates with their two guitars (and not even a bass guitar) is a seriously thick and murderous fucker! To maintain its overwhelming heaviness while keeping it listenable and not burying the band's character must surely be a challenge for any sound engineer.

Luckily there were some capable guys involved in this, so his live album constantly operates on the threshold to "whoa, come on, this is too much, man!" and it's brilliant.

No, you won't get the level of detail or all the sci-fi nuances from the Slomatics' studio recordings here. But what you get instead is a shitload of what made this concert so special in the first place: fun!

Slomatics live at the 013, Tilburg
I probably wouldn't count this show in my top ten performances of Roadburn 2017, but that says more about the occasion than about the band. This was still a fantastic concert without any flaws. While their music of course still is the heaviest, meanest sludge, you seldom see a band play this style with such overt joy and happiness. With the exception of the historic Zeal & Ardor performance, there was no other show with this strong communal sense of "Hey, can you believe it? We're all here at Roadburn, Baby!"

Ok, I'm biased because I was there, but I really think this carries over to the record.

And if it doesn't? Well, you still have eight tracks of phenomenal crushing amplifier and Melvins worship, featuring a drummer/singer who seems to bellow at you from the surface of Mars. Not to forget the icing on the cake: Jon Davis of Conan as guest on "March Of The 1000 Volt Ghost".

The clear vinyl looks and plays good as well, so what's not to love about this?

An excellent start for the new Live at Roadburn record season. I'm excited to see which other shows I have seen may find their way onto an album.

Highlights: Supernothing, March Of The 1000 Volt Ghost, And Yet It Moves, Running Battle

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