Sunday, May 06, 2007
Slomo - The Creep
Picture a sloth. Now, imagine that the sloth has just awoken from a deep sleep…cryogenic fugue, to be exact. He takes his first steps to find that he has stepped into an endless field of molasses, one that is quickly turning to ice in the frigid weather. All of this is taking place…underwater, by the way.
Is Slomo really that slow? No. But curiously, it comes close.
Featuring an hour long improvisational piece, consisting of a pulsating synth bass line, high pitched guitar manipulations (though it’s hard to tell that it is actually a guitar and not feedback, etc), random metallic clattering, and the frequently mentioned “zero eye-contact” feature (whatever that means, if it actually means anything). That is basically the extent that I can comment on the recording. Highly touted by such doom notables as Julian Cope and Stephen O’Malley, this is a “love-it-or-hate-it” type of recording. There is very little variation on the track besides the various guitar feedback, but then again, it was meant to be that way. On the positive side, the “music” at times does invoke a genuinely creepy feeling, mainly in that the music is very understated, yet consistent and unsettling. In short, this is doom that has been reduced down to the absolute minimum components: the line in which doom and dark ambience is purposefully blurred. Yet it also manages to hold your attention quite effectively, and before you know it, sixteen to thirty-five minutes have passed and you did not realize it. Such is the power of Slomo.
Apparently, Chris McGrail and Howard Marsden (the duo in charge of Slomo) are eventually going to produce a follow-up to “The Creep”. That would be quite an experience to listen to, for how can they possibly develop the near cult-like precision they apply to their sound? In a description in Aquarius Records, I found an appropriate line taken from the Slomo booklet:
“Whose detractors call static…but whose champions call Ecstasis?”
This applies to dark ambient and doom metal in general, but is also very particular to Slomo specifically. If you are a fan of dark ambient, doom metal, or slower-than-slow music, you can compare various bands claims, or you can go straight to the source with Slomo.
For best results, listen at a fairly high volume.
Holy McGrail website