Tuesday 23 January 2024

Cloud Of Souls - A Constant State Of Flux (Album Review)

Release Date: 16th February 2024. Record Label: Self Released. Formats: DD

A Constant State Of Flux - Tracklisting

A Constant State Of Flux

Better Than I Was

Homewrecker Blues

Love To Forgive, Wish To Forget

Break Down The Door


Chris Latta - Vocals, bass, acoustic guitar, keyboards on outro of 4

Cicatrix - Keyboards, electric guitar, drums

Jessie Browne-Michaels - saxophone on 4


A Constant State Of Flux is the second full length album from Doom Metallers Cloud Of Souls and it's quite a departure from their 2023 release A Fate Decided. Where that album was powered by a style of Blackened Doom and Heavy Metal, their new album is perhaps more of a dramatic shift into Post-Rock, Post-Doom, Prog Rock, Psych Rock, Chamber Music, and even Folk Rock. The album is deliberately slow paced and is inspired by bands such as 40 WATT SUN, NOTHING, PINK FLOYD and OPETH. This allows A Constant State Of Flux to be it's very own thing with it's emotionally charged vocals, long drawn out Post-Doom/Post-Rock rhythms and an OTT storytelling element appearing within the lyrics. 

The excellent two opening tracks of A Constant State Of Flux and Better Than I Was perfectly conjure up stories of different raw human emotions which the subtle vocals from Chris Latta (Spirit Division and Lavaborne) fully shine through. Chris Latta's vocals are quite distinctive with a certain Patrick Walker influence appearing but with an Americana or Journeyman spirit allowing Chris to have a true storytelling persona throughout the album. The music is bleak and consistently gloomy with moments of Chamber Folk, Shoegaze, Post-Rock and Slowcore combining for a challenging but deeply rewarding style of music especially within the long drawn out extended instrumental sounds that appear within the opening two tracks.

The album moves through a varied style of different themes on the other songs with Homewrecker Blues and Love To Forgive, Wish To Forget drawing upon moments of Blues Rock, Classic Doom and even a twinge of Acoustic based sounds on the mellower parts of the album. There's a twinge of Electrical guitars that appear within the final two tracks of Love To Forgive, Wish To Forget and Break Down The Door. However, they're not true DOOM METAL but a more subdued style of Post-Doom that fans of 40 WATT SUN, WARNING and even Pallbearer can appreciate. 

Chris is joined along for this creative journey by Cicatrix and Jessie Browne-Michaels who make sure that Chris isn't alone for this soulful and gloomy journey into the darker depths of the Slowcore abyss. The album can be quite SHOEGAZE in places but the sheer cinematic style of emotionally charged Prog Rock/Post-Doom grooves will no doubt impress many folks within the underground Doom Rock/Metal scene where Chris Latta already has a loyal and dedicated following which I consider myself apart of,

A Constant State Of Flux won't be for everyone but if you're in the mood for a record that pulls hard on the heartstrings which also delivers an emotionally complex record then this album is for you. This is an absolutely majestic and beautifully weird sounding release that is another sublime record from Cloud Of Souls.

Words by Steve Howe 

Thanks to Chris Latta for the promo.

A Constant State Of Flux will be available to buy on DD from February 16th 2024.