Saturday 13 January 2018

Marijannah - Till Marijannah (Album Review)

Release date: March 15th 2018. Label: Pink Tank Records. Format: CD/DD/Vinyl

Till Marijannah – Tracklisting

1. 1974
2. Bride Of Mine
3. Snakecharmer
4. All Hallows Eve




Marijannah are a fairly new band from Singapore but consists of seasoned veterans from Wormrot and The Caulfield Cult. So there's plenty of experiences on hand which shows so well in the four tracks on 'Till Marijannah'. What's on offer is super-fuzzed out heavy psych/stoner rock with enough sharp riffs to take down Mount Everest, and played in a way you've never heard before. It’s perhaps nothing new per se, but what makes this album stand out and sound different, in better words, is the approach to the music and the sheer talent on hand.

There are “only” 4 tracks on this debut, which clocks in at just over 29 minutes. Some might complain about a shortage of songs but I say the opposite. The way ‘Till Marijannah’ pans out over this time and track span works fantastically well. Opener ‘1974’ is a steamrolling riff-fest that grinds you down to dust while simultaneously catapulting you out into a claustrophobic, nightmarish state of being. Marijannah keeps pummeling you until no resistance is left and all you can do is give in and let this sonic juggernaut carry you away. ‘Bride Of Mine’ slows down the pace somewhat – not much - yet the band is still relentless and punishing. While one guitar unleashes riff after hard-driving riff, the other play soaring, trippy leads on top of it while the bass guitar and drums keeps it all together. Spaced out and brutal at the same time, can’t get much better than that.

‘Snakecharmer’ picks it up slightly sending out High On Fire/Sleep et al vibes. Hypnotic, mesmerizing and pulverizing, there’s a lurking evil in the shadows waiting to pounce once the time is right. The soloing is blinding and free-flowing offering some respite before the clutches of darkness gets its grasp on you. Closer ‘All Hallows Eve’ is, just like the other songs, punishing in it’s mid-tempo pace. But it is more atmospheric in the sense that the band has added choir-like background vocals in many parts. This elevates the song to something else especially since Marijannah has opted for clean, dreamy and hypnotic vocals throughout, instead of harsher vocals. A great ending to a great debut!

What sets this Singaporean band apart is, like I stated earlier in their approach and know-how within the ranks. But other factors are how deftly they blend riffs, vocal-style, tempos and feelings in a way I haven’t come across within this musical sphere before. Don’t know how they conjured this and I don’t care because Marijannah has created a beast of a debut!

Words by Håkan Nyman

Thanks to Pink Tank Records for the promo. Till Marijannah will be released on CD/DD/Vinyl via Pink Tank Records from March 15th 2018.