Wednesday 3 April 2024

Scorched Oak - Perception (Album Review)

Release Date: March 22nd 2024. Record Label: Self Released. Formats: DD/Vinyl

Perception - Tracklisting

1.Delusion 08:21

2.Mirrors 07:28

3.Relief 04:50

4.Echoes 05:52

5.Reflection 05:13

6.Oracle 08:00

7.Wizard (Bonus track) 05:50



Linda - Bass, Vocals

Ben - Guitar, Vocals

Freed - Drums


Perception is the new album from Doom/Stoner Rockers Scorched Oak who return after a four year absence after their acclaimed 2020 debut release Withering Earth. The band continues their Heavy Blues and Psychedelic Journey into the murky depths of fuzzier and down-tuned levels of Stoner Rock/Metal. The sound is perhaps more vivid and Prog Rock inspired especially with the dual vocals from Linda and Ben. 

Ben’s vocals offer the rough and ready approach whilst Linda’s vocals are more melodic and Blues based but when added together, Scorched Oak becomes a heavier and intense unit. Perception has a different Sludge Rock appetite compared to their debut with the sludgy instrumental sounds becoming quite Psych Metal dominated throughout. 

Layers of Cosmic Doom energy manifest into a Blues Rock force of seedy Fuzz Rock sounds which can be heard within the opening tracks of Delusion, Mirrors and Relief. Scorched Oak are quite deceptive and clever with their music especially within the overall VOLUME and HEAVINESS of the record. As some parts can be quite mellow before transforming from interludes of Ambient Post-Rock to a heavier aggressive Sludge/Stoner Metal style whilst containing a refreshing Post-Stoner/Post-Doom movement which allows the band to play some wicked sounding Blues Rock guitar solos along the way. 

Linda, Ben and Freed all have equal opportunities to play some epic instrumental solos which will make the hair on the back of your neck stand to attention. The Prog Rock flavour of Perception allows Scorched Oak to lean further into areas of Classic Doom, Post-Punk and even Occult Rock in the later stages of the album. Though, the main draw of this album and Scorched Oak overall is their dramatic use of long drawn out Instrumental Grooves and Cosmic/Space Rock themes which made their debut album such a standout.

Other standout tracks to check out are: Echoes, Reflection and Oracle. Though, the album has a few cool surprises along the way with Scorched Oak playing moments of classic Heavy Metal with the vocals becoming slightly more demonic and aggressive at the same time. 

Perception feels like the next exciting chapter of a longer and complex story which was first played out within their debut album Withering Earth. I wonder if Perception is the middle chapter of a trilogy of albums that Scorched Oak always planned to release. I’m probably wrong with that observation but I can see many similar themes created for Withering Earth.

However, I digress - Perception is a rich, soulful and multi-layered Psychedelic Stoner Metal experience which is boosted by fabulous production values which should impress the whole Doom/Stoner underground scene.

Words by Steve Howe


Official | Facebook | BandCamp | Instagram | BigCartel