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The Watchers - Black Abyss

Label: Ripple Music
Format: download
Released: 2018
Reviewed By: Jack Mangan
Rating: 9/10


Oh, hell yeah. The first two power chords on the album step from root to tritone, aka the Devil’s note, signaling what’s to come. On their outstanding debut album, “Black Abyss,” The Watchers shoulder up to other Black Sabbath descendants, including Black Label Society, Down/CoC, Warrior Soul, Alice in Chains, Metallica, Megadeth, Soundgarden, White Zombie, with a pinch of Stone Temple Pilots, and some Mike Howe-era Metal Church. It also reminds me a little of last year’s Necromancers record, one of the best albums of the year.

 

The Watchers’ guitar tone is as sick as a London rat. It’s perfect. Kudos to the band and studio for capturing this so well; they could have recorded an entire song of just chugging low E power chords, and it would still be pretty good. Guitarist Jeremy Von Epicc (can we get a real name check?) never rests on the comfortable laurels of the powerful production; he fills every solo with distinctive, creative phrasings, keeping things persistently interesting and engaging. About halfway through track 2, “Alien Lust,” when it was apparent that the excellence of track 1 was no fluke, I let my critical brain relax and just banged my head. This is great Metal music. Other recommended songs: “Starfire,” the “Fell On Black Days” vibe of “Suffer Fools” and “Seven Tenets.”

 
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