Thursday 28 January 2021

Spelljammer - Abyssal Trip (Album Review)

Release Date: 26th February 2021. Record Label: RidingEasy Records. Format: DD/CD/Vinyl

Abyssal Trip - Tracklisting



Among The Holy

Abyssal Trip


Silent Rift


Robert - Guitars

Jonatan - Drums

Niklas - Bass/Vocals


Swedish Doom/Stoner Metal Overlords Spelljammer are back from a 5 year slumber to wreak more Cosmic and Doomed Out Havoc with their new album Abyssal Trip. The album is quite a solitary and cold experience with the band focusing upon more of the darkness currently going in the world but set in the realms of outer space for the majority of the album.

Spelljammer focus on that Cosmic Doomed Out Sound from their past few releases and not the Desert/Stoner Rock grooves they first made their names with almost a decade ago. This album is full of heavy progressive and world-building riffs that build up to a melodic rhythm but Spelljammer have spent their time in the wilderness wisely by playing a more demented style of almost Occult Rock on this album.

I do get shades of Monolord and Slomatics on this record but those guys and Spelljammer are perhaps the best bands in the scene playing this style of Spaced Out Doom. Though Cities Of Mars aren’t too far behind.

Anyway back to Abyssal Trip. Spelljammer treats you 6 tracks of heavy progressive Doom/Stoner Riffs where the band blend Swirling Psychedelic Noises and Progressive passages with distorted vocals keeping the listener informed of what's happening around them.

The first opening 2 songs - Bellwether and Lake - is classic Spelljammer through and through. Progressive Doom/Stoner Rock merging into elements of dramatic Post-Rock ideas and letting the hypnotic and almost dreamlike music build at it’s own pace. Both of these songs are bone-crushingly heavy with distorted grooves being some of the best music that Spelljammer have released to date.

Third song - Among The Holy - sees Spelljammer operate with a more determined and direct sound with the song bringing a heavy thunderous Doom Metal atmosphere but with a classic Psych Rock attitude to keep everything grounded. This is one of the most aggressive songs on the album but one that also offers some of the most addictive riffs as well.

Fourth song - Abyssal Trip - is the first of 2 tracks that run past the 10 minute mark and this sees Spelljammer venture into the realm of Occult Doom Metal with a soundclip opening the song and setting the scene for a more gloomier offering from the band. The song soon moves into the normal Spaced Out Rock atmosphere but it’s been corrupted by a heavier gloom and doom element and Spelljammer just run away with this idea and offer the best track on the album. The song moves into many different areas of Doom and Stoner Metal that multiple listens of this song is an absolute must with the brilliant instrumental being on display.

The final two songs (Peregrine and Silent Rift) close the album brilliantly with Peregrine being a slow-paced gloomy and psychedelic instrumental track. Silent Rift is the other epic song the band have included on this release and it has a similar vibe as the title track. 

Silent Rift is more riff-driven and Spelljammer don’t waste any time in getting down in playing the good stuff and the fantastic drumming keeps everything moving along with heavy guitars adding layers of sublime riffs which allows the overall flow and mood of the album to be slightly more upbeat but still retaining that gloomy rock atmosphere that Spelljammer excel at.

Abyssal Trip is another wonderful and thrilling chapter from Spelljammer. This album has potential to be considered as one of the Doom/Stoner Metal albums of the year. I know it’s a bit early to say things like that but I heard Lowrider’s classic comeback album Refractions the same time last year. Look how things turned out for that record. Well I’m going to say that Abyssal Trip has the same type of appeal. 

This is a must have album to own. End Of.

Words by Steve Howe

Thanks to Dave at US/THEM PR for the promo. Abyssal Trip will be available to buy on CD/DD/Vinyl via RidingEasy Records from February 26th 2021.


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