Crushing riffs and tortured vocals are the backbone of any metal record. Doom metal makes those riffs sound genuinely destructive and apocalyptic, and The Atlas Moth make sure they don't hold back when it comes to that. The Atlas Moth sound like evil in Coma Noir, bringing thick riffs and vicious vocals to bring in something scathingly harsh.
There's a specific element to Coma Noir that makes it sound so deadly: the vocals. The harsh screams sound animalistic and raw, and truly sound like something straight from the depths of hell. You hear some really vicious and grating screams on 'Actual Human Blood,' making you feel genuinely uneasy (and amazed) with the sound. You get a taste of that very raw anger right from the start in title track 'Coma Noir,' the big, dark riffs leading into the even more evil 'Last Transmissions From The Late, Great Planet Earth.'
An area where many metal albums suffer is that they're all riffs and no substance; that is, it's the same sounding song time and time again. The Atlas Moth make sure to avoid that here, experimenting and changing things up as the album goes. A great example is 'The Frozen Crown,' the intro guitar having a similar phase shift effect to Muse's 'Map Of The Problematique,' some fantastic guitar continuing throughout the guitar as various electronic and ambient noises support the music in the back. The tradeoffs between the cleaner, guttural vocals and the vicious screams is fantastic, and the song itself resolves positively by the end. 'Galactic Brain' takes on an epic, huge vibe while 'The Streets Of Bombay' feels less angry and more restrained, adding more color to the record. Closing track 'Chloroform' even starts progressively, the marching drums and twin guitar lines leading to a thrilling conclusion. Coma Noir really doesn't tread on one sound for too long.
The Atlas Moth sound like evil in Coma Noir, ensuring that their dark, visceral album stays biting and unique to the very end. It's definitively dark but has its moments where the light seems to shine through, almost as if it were a story. It's everything you'd want from a doom album and more.
Favorite Tracks: The Frozen Crown, Coma Noir; Last Transmissions From The Late, Great Planet Earth
Least Favorite Track: Smiling Knife
Rating: 77 / 100
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