Wednesday 8 June 2022

Problem With Dragons - Accelerationist (Album Review)

Release Date: June 23rd 2022. Record Label: Self Released. Format: CD/DD/Vinyl

Accelerationist - Tracklisting

1.Live by the Sword 

2.In the Name of His Shadow

3.Don't Fail Me

4.6,000 Spears

5.A Demon Possessed

6.Dark Times (for Dark Times)

7.Against Me

8.Astro Magnum

9.Have Mercy, Show Mercy



Problem With Dragons return with their new album Accelerationist and it's another creative leftfield turn from the band. As they bring new elements into their music such as Industrial Rock to go with their already addictive Prog Sludge/Stoner Metal sound that even shows signs of Noise Rock, Grunge, Psych Rock and what I call "Post-Whatever" grooves.

Opening song Live By The Sword features industrial sounds and digitised vocals set against a Sludgy "Technical/Glitchy" musical backdrop with certain ambient themes and vibes marrying perfectly with the sonically imposing proggy "WEEDIAN" grooves. The song is quite slow moving but allows the band plenty of opportunity to play many levels of Psychedelic and Industrial based weirdness. The lyrics are quite good as well with some a level of bleakness that is carried throughout the album.

Up next is In The Name Of His Shadow which is a faster and more aggressive track that could have easily come off their incredible debut album. Distorted Industrial sounds run amok yet again with clean and digitised vocals telling a socially aware tale with parallels to modern day life. The music is the real star here with Problems With Dragons excelling by creating a harsh "DOOM" based environment and the Sludge/Stoner elements fully taking over near the end of the song.

The next song “Don't Fail Me” has a "Mastodon" and "Metallica" feel to it all. Under more layers of Industrial/Glitch based sounds with a free-flowing experimental vibe that can be hard to describe as Sludge/Stoner Metal. The vocals can be confusing at first but soon become clearer and have more clarity to them with repeated listens. The lyrics are socially aware yet again. Problem With Dragons still have some cool tricks of their own when the Prog/Drone musical parts appear allowing the band to play some wildly and wonderfully different instrumental parts.

Problem With Dragons covers a lot of different musical ground on this record. This is their most experimental and far-out album yet. The band have a "forward-thinking" mentality to their music and the atmosphere can be quite intense with the crazy sounds held on this album especially on songs such as: A Demon Possessed, Dark Times (for Dark Times), Astro Magnum and Accelerationist.

The second half of the album does become more Progressive and also gives Problem WIth Dragons the perfect opportunity to play some of the best and heaviest grooves on the entire album. The vocals can be even described as OTT or Operatic in places but everything works brilliantly well as it should. Everything fits into place to tell a captivating story that is held together by first-rate instrumental work.

Problem With Dragons may have a "WEEDIAN" or "STONER" sounding name. However, the reality is different as the band takes a more experimental approach with their music. They still retain classic tips and tricks from the Sludge/Stoner Metal underground but give this a more cerebral approach inspired by themes from legendary Sci-fi author Philip K. Dick. Well that's my own thoughts on their music and perhaps literary influences.

The production values are superb with the band outlining a fresh "DIY" approach to the whole sound of the album.

Problem With Dragons maybe one of the most wonderfully weird and sonically diverse bands within the underground scene and this doesn't stop their new album being another brilliantly exciting record.

Long may this continue!!!

Words by Steve Howe

Thanks to the band for the promo.

Accelerationist will be available to buy on CD/DD from June 23rd 2022 with a Vinyl Release at a later date.


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