Taming of the Demons

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Earthride's sound is that of a lumbering beast. Not necessarily because they restrict themselves to doom metal's slower-than-coma-inducing crawl (they rarely do), however, but because of vocalist David Sherman's unnaturally crusty, sub-Lemmy growl. A frightening weapon which he'd occasionally reveal during his tenure with Wino's Spirit Caravan, the man's gruesome, bowel-churning rasp is both an acquired taste and an inseparable element of Earthride's unique sound. Backed by a solid set of memorable doom metal songwriting, the resulting Taming of the Demons album (complete with cred-building Master of Reality-inspired logo on the back sleeve) may strike uninitiated fans as somewhat simplistic and unremarkable, but will instantly connect with knowledgeable enthusiasts of this uncompromising musical style. After opening with the exceptionally heavy (and funny) "Valiume 10," a -- you guessed it -- love song to Valium, the quartet proves it can creep with the best of them via the snail-like "For Mere Remains" and later the equally turgid "Mr. Green." The speed-barreling rip-ride of "Train Wreck" is something of an anomaly, too, but this is just as well, as Earthride is clearly in its element when riding groove-intensive, mid-paced doom rockers like "Under a Black Cloud," "Deception," and the massive title track. Dirty and delightful, Taming of the Demons delivers primo doom metal all around.

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