Release date: February 8th 2020. Label: Self Released. Format: DD
Fear Of A Dead Planet - Tracklisting
1.The Eternal Void 06:21
2.Mind Killer 04:24
3.A Million Deaths 04:15
6.Walk the Earth 03:40
8.Snake Wizard 08:22
Mark Mundell - vocals
Malcolm McKenzie - guitar
Kees Hengst - bass
Dion Harris - drums
Planet Of The Red (POTD) debut album – Fear Of A Dead Planet – is a heavy atmospheric blend of Doom, Sludge, Fuzz and Stoner Metal with bleak despairing vocals leading the way. The vocals can be more “Death” based growls for some people’s tastes but the music is perhaps the real star here and will no doubt allow listeners to gravitate towards the band.
The album is quite raw and down-tuned at times with a deep progressive sound holding everything together. The gloomy atmosphere is evident from the start with the excellent opening song – The Eternal Void – which has a subtle Doom/Sludge Metal presence and never lets up with it’s slow-to-mid paced grooves showing you what will be in store for you for the whole album. The vocals are quite direct with the harsh growls adding a more menacing vibe to POTD overall sound. The song does take time to fully get going but there are some cool heavy progressive riffs along the way.
Second song – Mind Killer – opens with a creepy soundclip before a standard Doom/Stoner Metal riff appears with vocals showing a different side to POTD compared to the first song. The music is more settled and you can hear a sense of adventure and fun within this song but POTD know how to turn the mood sinister with violent and gloomy “FUZZ” vibes on certain parts of the song. The song can be quite psychedelic in places but it’s mostly felt and heard from the background. POTD add many different styles of music to this song and it could have easily fell out of place but the band play a wicked blend of Doom/Stoner Metal that is quite adventurous in places.
Third song – A Million Deaths – carries on with the harsh vocals but with modern Sludge/Stoner Metal grooves leading the way. The song may lack finesse but POTD bring their own despairing vision to the table with bleak vocals and lyrics being the main focus for the most part of the song. The heavy and twisted guitars feel almost too forced at times but there are some great sounds hidden amongst the aggressive style of music that POTD play here.
Fourth song – Nashwan – carries on the thunderous and aggressive attitude of the band with the raw atmosphere finally starting to make sense. The vocals and lyrics aren’t the best but there is an addictive quality to them which leaves you glued to the edge of your seat. POTD start to play some of the best riffs on the album from here on in and it makes for a more rewarding experience.
The second half of the album carries on the dark and violent sounds that POTD showed in the first half with quite a few epic guitar solos adding a more psychedelic vibe that I didn’t actually expect.
If you’re a fan of bands such as CONAN and Behold The Monolith then POTD are the band for you. Fear Of A Dead Planet won’t be for everyone but if you’re looking for a band who are not afraid to play a more sinister blend of Doom, Sludge and Stoner Metal then this is the place to be.
Whilst not perfect by any means, POTD have still released a thrilling and hugely entertaining album that is packed full of great ideas and superb riffs.
Words by Steve Howe