Thursday 8 February 2024

Kala Azar - Kala Azar (EP Review)

Release Date: 05th January 2024. Record Label: Self Released. Formats: DD/Vinyl

Kala Azar - Kala Azar - Tracklisting

1.Nothingness 06:59

2.Kala Azar 08:26

3.Flies 06:01

4.Stone Fragments 06:59


aron: vox/guitar
phips: bass
dörig: drums


Doom/Sludge/Stoner Metallers Kala Azar have named themselves after a very nasty disease also known as black fever and I expected this band to be a Death/Grind/Thrash Metal band based upon the name alone. However, hence my surprise when I found a great Doom/Sludge/Stoner Metal band who play some downright impressive Psychedelic, Fuzzy and Down-tuned grooves with moments of Crusty Progressive sounds along the way.

Their new self-titled EP allows Kala Azar to blend down-tuned trippy rhythms with the more primal sounding Doom/Sludge Metal riffs that have quite a SHAMANIC sound to them within the opening track Nothingness. The song perhaps works best when Kala Azar plays that winning style of Fuzzy based STONER sound that allows the band the perfect opportunity to play some wicked WEEDIAN based guitar shredding whilst keeping within the dark narrative of the entire whole record.

Second track Kala Azar is the standout track with the band moving further into the Sludge Rock/Metal vortex with the vocals outlining the experience of the actual disease Visceral Leishmaniasis that the band, the track and record are named after. The song does have quite an unpleasant quality to it when the vocals appear but Kala Azar impress once again with their down-tuned and amplifier distorted grooves which move between Progressive heaviness and Fuzzed up aggression with the band playing a multitude of different sounding guitar solos and extended instrumental jams.

The final two tracks of Flies and Fragments continue with the distorted and down-tuned sounds that Kala Azar explore even further with moments of Mastodon and High On Fire inspired heaviness with a Crust Punk element appearing within the sludgy guitars being played within Flies. Though, it’s the Psychedelic and Ambient parts that have been added to the background within this part of the EP that make the most impression. As they bring a more dynamic and powerful presence that elevates the heaviness of the music to different levels of FUZZ appearing and allowing Kala Azar to play some highly original grooves of their own making.

Kala Azar is an excellent and superbly produced release that should appeal to the wide majority of the Doom/Sludge/Stoner Metal community with its punishing riffs and bleak visions contained within the EP’s twenty seven minute running time. I’m actually quite excited to hear what Kala Azar have planned in the future and I would love to hear what destructive damage these guys could achieve within a full length release. However, until that day, this EP is a must have record to add to your record collection.

Excellent and Highly Recommended.

Words by Steve Howe 


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