Wednesday 10 March 2021

Slowenya - Somer (Album Review)

Release date: February 26th 2021. Label: Self Released. Format: DD

Somer – Tracklisting

1.Slowenya 00:43
2.Unruhe 07:27
3.Larvae Beau 08:15
4.Plethora 04:16
5.Somer 10:10


Jan Trygg - guitars / vocals / samples
Timo Niskala - drums / samples / ambient
Tapani Levanto - bass / backing vocals


Somer is the debut release from Finnish Doom/Sludge Rockers Slowenya who also bring a touch of Alternative Rock/Metal and Ambient Splendour to their overall sound and for the majority of this record. The album has direct influences from bands such as BORIS, Monolord, YOB and Torche. Well that’s the different styles of music that I’ve noticed when listening to the album.

Opening song – Slowenya – is a 43 second teaser highlighting the heavy and powerful sounds that the band adds for this record. It’s quite an interesting style of Ambient Noises and shows a brief insight into the actual band itself.

Second song – Unruhe – is an emotionally driven Alternative Rock/Metal song with flashes of brutally heavy Doom/Sludge grooves that has a slight “BORIS” flavour to it. The vocals come drifting in and they have a distorted and zoned out effect. The music is quite slow-paced but there’s an interesting style of music being played here with different strands of Doom and Sludge Metal with an Ambient Score holding everything together. The Psychedelic riffs offers a more “human” touch with some epic Drone based guitar riffs bringing you into Slowenya’s dark and uplifting world.

Third song – Larvae Beau – is the standout song where Slowenya adapt their music for a more heavier style of Drone/Doom based madness with thumping guitars but that soon changes to a more uplifting Ambient/Post-Rock vibe with trippy vocals being added at the right moment to the song. The “BORIS” influence is once again shining through but Slowenya employ enough musical creativity to stand on their own wonderful sounding ideas. The song also has that poppier “Doom” element that TORCHE use for their music.

Fourth song – Plethora – sees Slowenya offer a more experimental style of music with Ambient Noises moving from one weird noise to the next. It’s an interesting song to add to the album and some may people may not enjoy the trippy weirdness of it all. However, there’s still some fantastic Drone, Doom and Sludge grooves to fully appreciate.

The final song – Somer – is a 10 minute epic that I initially had trouble with. As the song has more of an 80s Alt-Rock/Gloomy vibe to it. The song does take time to fully get going and the band do play some of the best riffs on this song. However, the vocals were a hard sell for me at first. Though, after a few listens I became more emotionally attached to this song and started to enjoy the song more and more. The vocals do feel lifted from The Smiths and Slowenya adapt a more “Shoegaze” effect on this song. The music is still LOUD and POWERFUL but there’s a lot more going on with this song than you initially expect. Give this track a few listens before making your final decision. I’m glad I did. As this song ends this album on a high note.

The feel and sound of the album is superb from start to finish. Esben Willems (MONOLORD) mastered this album at his famed Berserk Audio studios. The album was mixed by Kaj Mäki-Ullakko who also does a stellar job making this album sound HUGE in all the right places.

Somer is a quality debut release from Slowenya and offers a different style of Ambient Doom and Sludge Metal for people to listen to.

Excellent and Highly Recommended.

Words by Steve Howe