Sunday 29 January 2023

JAGGU - Rites For The Damned (Album Review)

Release Date: January 27th 2023. Record Label: Self Released. Formats: DD/Vinyl

Rites For The Damned: Tracklisting

1.Carnage 03:49

2.Earth Murder 04:00

3.Mindgap 04:30

4.Electric Blood 06:22

5.Lenina Ave 06:40

6.Enthralled 05:28

7.Marching Stride 04:55

8.God To Be Through 04:41


JAGGU is a new discovery for me and I fell in love with their bombastic style of Progressive Psych/Doom/Stoner/Sludge Metal that reminds me of Mastodon and Baroness but with JAGGU playing a more alternative style of music. Their new album Rites For The Damned has a similar feeling to Crack The Skye with its use of Trance inducing Psych grooves and Progressive Metal beats.

Opening song Carnage lasts under four minutes but feels twice as long with JAGGU using different melodic structures against multiple psychedelic backdrops with the music being quite catchy and aggressive at the same time. There is a sense of Modern Day Rock/Metal within JAGGU’s music and their addictive lyrics only add to this effect. The music is quite harsh in places and becomes more exciting when the band switch to a more mellow style of Psych Rock/Metal that has a Post-Stoner or Post-Doom vibe.

Second song Earth Murder sees JAGGU continue with their Progressive Stoner/Sludge journey with a more hardcore feeling with Mastodon-esque grooves but still allowing JAGGU to do their own thing. The vocals are an inspired choice giving the band a meaner attitude. The music is quite cinematic in places but JAGGU still maintains a chaotic edge when the band plays a faster style. The song has some epic breakdowns and multiple changes within the creative dynamics of the song.

Third song Mindgap is a song I had the most issues with originally. As I felt JAGGU overstretched themselves here with the different styles of music they employ here. However, after a few listens I started to enjoy the song much more especially with the trippy and progressive riffs that appear throughout the song. The song has an Alt Rock approach with the vocals being quite different in places. JAGGU added elements of Space Rock and Stadium Rock into the mix for this song and there’s some wonderful guitar solos that bring a sense of impending DOOM into the overall sound and feel of the album.

Fourth song Electric Blood is where JAGGU impressed me the most with their use of Hardcore growls and clean based vocals. The song feels inspired by MUSE and DEVIN TOWNSEND with the music still being firmly within the Doom/Sludge/Stoner Metal environment. The song is mighty Progressive with JAGGU perhaps playing one of the album's standout tracks. 

The second half of Rites For The Damned is just as exciting and crazed as the first half with JAGGU bringing a Post-Metal effect on this part of the album especially on tracks such as Lenina Ave, Marching Stride and God To Be Through. #

JJAGGU show they’re highly talented and fantastic musicians on Rites For The Damned. They have written some truly outstanding complex songs for this album and have some epic creative ideas of their own to gain further attention within the underground scene.

Rites For The Damned is an unexpected delight and is worthy to be added to anyone’s record collection like it has with mine.

Words by Steve Howe


Official | Facebook | BandCamp | Instagram