Thursday 14 January 2021

BREATH - Primeval Transmissions (Album Review)

Release Date: 5th February 2021. Record Label: Desert Records. Format. CD/DD

Primeval Transmissions - Tracklisting

Battle For Harmonic Balance / Halls Of Amenti
Evocation (Reprise)

Band Members

Steven O’Kelly - Bass Guitars, Vocals
Ian Caton - Drums, Auxiliary Percussion


BREATH are a Drone/Doom Metal Duo who specialize in playing Meditative Doom Metal. This allows the band to play music that is more on the slow side of Drone/Doom Metal for their debut full length album - Primeval Transmissions. The band play a more reflective and spiritual style of Metal where the band play epic long slow notes that builds up at cool heavy rhythm.

Partially influenced by OM and SLEEP, there are deep similarities with BREATH and the music they create on this record. However, the Drone based quality of their sound allows BREATH to dictate their own creative visions with plenty of powerful Doom, Drone and Stoner Metal grooves a huge reliance of Psychedelic weirdness.

These guys are primarily a Drum and Bass duo. Though, that doesn’t mean there are no riffs. Far from it. You’ll be surprised by the high amount of addictive riffs on the album despite starting really slow.

The album contains 5 songs but it feels like one extended song split into individual chapters and it’s a good setup for this album. You experience many different sides to BREATH especially on the opening song - Evocation. BREATH play a simple style of down-tuned Drone based Psychedelic Doom/Stoner Metal with Sabbath levels of slow-paced heaviness. The chant-like vocals and deeply hallucogenic lyrics all play into the Meditative State Of Mind that BREATH plays with complete conviction.

Second song - Dwarka - carries on the slow-pounding and brooding style of bass-heavy Drone/Doom Metal which can be quite solitary in places and BREATH have a lot of time to play as the song runs for over 14 minutes. The song is one of the standout pieces on the album with BREATH playing a wide variety of different styles of music. The second half of the song is quite bleak in places with weird Psychedelic noises drifting between the vocals and BASS HEAVY RIFFAGE and highly intelligent drumming leading the way.

Third song - Observer - allows BREATH the opportunity to play a more conventional style of Doom/Stoner Metal song whilst offering that Meditative Doom experience the band have built this album around. The music and creative choices are less flamboyant but still an exciting mix of the different state of minds or grooves BREATH contain through their Progressive ideas and sounds. The band is joined by Portland Doom Metal Royalty - Rob Wrong (Witch Mountain) on guitars and he brings a more modern sound to this song with his impressive guitar solos being the best part of the song.

The final two songs Battle For Harmonic Balance / Halls Of Amenti and Evocation (reprise) sees BREATH carry on playing their wild and vivid style of Meditative Doom with splashes of Progressive Rock and Stoner Metal that wouldn’t go amiss from a YOB or Eagle Twin album whilst retaining their own style and identity. You are treated to 18 minutes of music that is less frantic than the other songs but still showcasing a great band playing to their creative strengths and leaving you wanting more. Though the last song is a slightly different version to the opening track but different to stand on its own convictions.

The production side of the album even has Rob Wrong pulling engineering, recording and mixed duties with the legendary Tad Doyle mastering the album. So even with the album sounding quite solitary, this is still a superbly made album which will give your mental wellbeing a much needed Meditative Doom Metal boost.

I absolutely adore this album and I was not disappointed. If you’re a fan of SLEEP, OM and YOB then BREATH is the perfect band for you to embrace and became a fan of. Primeval Transmissions is a thrilling, deeply spiritual and epic sounding album that should be an essential part of your record collection.

Words by Steve Howe

Thanks to Desert Records for the promo. Primeval Transmissions will be available to buy on CD/DD via Desert Records from February 05th 2021.


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