Thursday 16 November 2023

URNA - Diamond Tears (EP Review)

Release Date: November 13th 2023. Record Label: Self Released. Formats: DD

Diamond Tears - Tracklisting

1.Diamond tears 05:36

2.Black city 05:50

3.The dog's gold 05:39

4.Werewolf tantrum 08:14


Axel Ehrencrona - guitar/vocals

William Riever - bass

Björn Andersson - drums


Diamond Tears is the new EP from Swedish Doom/Sludge bruisers URNA which follows their equally impressive 2022 self-titled release which I discovered just recently and was very happy to hear this wonderfully distorted and down-tuned gem. The grooves are top-tier and what I expect to hear from the famed Swedish Doom/Sludge Metal underground scene.

There’s a lot of distinctive Ambient/Distorted flavours within this EP which was used quite effectively on their last album with the band playing a muscular and aggressive style of music with harsh melodies being heard within the grimy heaviness that URNA deliver on this record. The vocals fly between harsh growls and subtle clean vocals with a twinge of violent intent between them.

The opening track of Diamond Tears offers a primal and feral underground sound with URNA playing long drawn out Progressive Sludgy grooves that have a small amount of Blackened Doom vitality behind them. There’s a rough sounding quality to URNA’s music that is still quite melodic even with the chaotic instrumental sounds being played throughout. 

Second track Black City goes even further with the pummelling harsh growls with a bleak creative outlook with shades of Blackened Post-Metal starting to appear. You can hear a sense of Bleak Cinematic themes that transcend into almost Ambient Droned Out Heaviness which drifts between bands such as Sunn 0))), Neurosis and ISIS whilst still retaining that classic Swedish Doom/Sludge Metal vibe.

URNA features Björn Andersson on Drums within their ranks and he’s better known as being the guitarist and co-founder of legendary heavy-hitters Ocean Chief and I have to say Björn’s drumming is absolutely terrifying in places especially on tracks such as Black City and The Dog’s Gold.

The final two tracks of The Dog’s Gold and Werewolf Tantrum delves further and deeper into the Doom/Sludge Metal vortex with flashes of Psychedelic and Ambient experimentation. However, the grooves remain constantly inventive with a modern Hard Rock sound starting to emerge especially within the slower parts of the track though the despairing vocals from Axel allows the atmosphere to have a forward momentum until the closing stages of the EP.

Diamond Tears never waivers from creating a destructive environment where the sounds bring a sense of realism to the EP with URNA impressing the most on the more slower Sludge/Post-Metal instrumental moments that appear within Werewolf Tantrum which is also perhaps the standout track on the whole EP. 

URNA is another stellar example why the Swedish Doom/Sludge Metal scene is so highly thought of within the global community. When the music is this great then it’s hard not to be impressed by everything contained within Diamond Tears. 

This is an intense and jaw-dropping release that leaves with stunning production values that leaves you wanting to hear more. What more can I say apart from that URNA have delivered one of the most outstanding Doom/Sludge Metal EP’s of the year.

Words by Steve Howe


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