Satan Worshipping Doom

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Just in case the group's four previous LPs didn't get the message across, Chicago's Bongripper specialize in Satan Worshipping Doom. It says so right here, see? And, having already indulged in both hourlong "songs" à la Sleep's Dopesmoker (2006's The Great Barrier Reefer, 2007's Heroin) and collections of shorter tunes (2007's Hippie Killer and 2008's Hate Ashbury), for this fifth opus the prolific Windy City quartet chose to produce four ten-plus minute epics cleverly entitled "Hail," "Satan," Worship," and "Doom." All of them instrumental, by the way, as has been the band's m.o. from day one, which means the onus of capturing and maintaining listener attention falls squarely upon these songs' elephantine detuned guitars, reverberating bass, and thunderous drums -- no small challenge, but one the band frankly pulls off with ease. Although all four compositions are, by and large, cut from the same, all too familiar sludge/doom shroud worn by Bongzilla, Belzebong, and other "bong bands," doing without the kind of vocals typically attached to this music (usually coarse, unintelligible, and hardly rife with thought-provoking lyrics, let's be honest) actually liberates Bongripper to weave seriously contagious riffs, power chords, and even melodies into their long-evolving compositions -- most notably on the daunting 16-minute "Worship." Moreover, the group can improvise outside this script when desired, as the pure black metal fury igniting "Satan" readily attests, and they arguably only fail to raise a pulse on the unusually by-the-numbers closer, "Doom." All in all, therefore, Satan Worshipping Doom is quite a notable specimen of this breed of underground metal, while never even having to open its mouth to make Bongripper's case.

Track Listing

Title/Composer Performer Time Stream
1 13:44 Amazon
2 11:37 Amazon
3 16:00 Amazon
4 11:53 Amazon
blue highlight denotes track pick