Black Sleep of Kali

Our Slow Decay

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With their 2010 debut album, Our Slow Decay, Denver, CO's Black Sleep of Kali cast themselves into the crowded fray of postmodern metal bands like Baroness, Torche, Black Cobra, and Mastodon, whose fusion of finessed musicianship and bruising violence, primal sludge and progressive complexity, hardcore and metal has arguably become the entire metal genre's leading-edge niche at the start of the 2010s. And there's certainly no denying that these influences frequently loom large in Black Sleep of Kali's rearview mirrors, because there's just too much Mastodon spread across the epic "In Time," lots of Black Cobra studding the serrated semi-thrashing of "There Is Nothing," and plenty of Torche in the omnipresent shouted vocals (and occasional vocal harmonies!) heard throughout. Luckily for the Denver-based group, not even their evident debt to these style-defining forefathers can taint their unquestionable musical ability, nor compromise particularly enjoyable efforts like the briskly galloping "The Crow and the Snake," the mean staccato-riffed "The Great Destroyer," and the doom and stoner undertows displayed by "Big Sky." Which is to say, there is abundant individual promise nestled within Black Sleep of Kali's familiar frameworks, and this just places the onus upon them to carve increasingly distinctive material out of the monolithic granite building blocks quarried by others who came before.

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