Wednesday 15 March 2023

Grey Stag - Call Of The Mountain (Album Review)

Release Date: March 17th 2023. Record Label: Self Released. Formats: CD/DD

Call Of The Mountain: Tracklisting


These Seas Are Deep

Steadfast Leviathan


Killing Monsters

The Adversary

Make They Victory Pyrrhic

No Stranger To Pain


The Mountain Moves



Matt Geoghegan - Bass/Vocals

Steve Walsh - Guitars/Gang Vocals

Daragh Kenny - Drums/Gang Vocals


Grey Stag are a Progressive Sludge Metal Band from Dublin, Ireland are influenced by bands such as High On Fire, Mastodon and even early-era Death. Their debut album Call Of The Mountain even offers moments of Thrash Metal on the early stages with a Blackened or Bludgeoning Stoner Metal approach. The lead vocals have a certain Matt Pike flair but with an interesting DIY sound. The album is quite raw-based with the intense production values and allows Grey Stag to operate on a harsher and volatile level compared to other bands releasing similar material.

Grey Stag centres upon early-era Mastodon based grooves with harsh clean vocals adding a certain RELAPSE RECORDS feeling to the whole sound of the early album tracks such as: Breith, These Seas Are Deep and Steadfast Leviathan. The whole style of music is chaotic and equally melodic when the band abandon Progressive Sludge Metal creative principles for uglier Thrash Metal beats and vice-versa when Grey Stag aren't afraid to revert back to different sounds they employ on the album.

The Death Metal environment is there but offered only in small outbursts of aggressive modern day grooves but retaining a catchy sense of modern day METAL realism. The music is mostly inspired by High On Fire and Mastodon with Grey Stag not afraid to switch to a more technical style of Prog Rock/Metal which features some intricate and technically superb played groves on the more substantial tracks on the album such as Steadfast Leviathan, Killing Monsters, The Adversary, Sunder and The Mountain Moves.

These are the standout tracks where Grey Stag exceed by joining different sounds of the underground Prog Sludge/Stoner Metal scenes but with a refreshing THRASH based outlooks. There's HARSH VOCALS galore with a swirling Psychedelic Outlook appearing which can be quite deceiving to hear at first. 

Grey Stag show their musical influences far and wide with a love and appreciation for the Groove Metal genres and even showcasing a style of Classic Hard Rock and Heavy Metal on the shorter tracks such as Trespasser which will impress fans of bands such as Thin Lizzy and Iron Maiden.

However, the album truly stands on it's own creative ground when Grey Stag play their muscular slab of Prog Sludge/Stoner/Thrash Metal with the Groove Metal aspect being the glue that holds everything together and allowing the band to play a never-ending style of addictive and technically wonderful played sounds. 

The whole production of the album is very raw-sounding but it allows Call Of The Mountain  to have an unsettling sound of its own. The music is harsh and volatile throughout but Grey Stag match the early brilliance of Mastodon and High On Fire whilst delivering their own thrilling blend of creative carnage to the underground scene. 

Call Of The Mountain is a sublime album that delves right into the action for a pulsating style of Progressive Sludge/Groove Metal that also offers a lot of cool surprises along the way.

This album is A FUCKING MONSTER. Ignore At Your Own Peril!!!

Words by Steve Howe.

Thanks to Grey Stag for the promo.

Call Of The Mountain is available to buy on CD/DD from March 17th 2023.


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