BeatPick Album of the Week: asbestoscape

Ah, the world of Heavy metal. So many would agree to put it down as an immature, poorly refined genre, based on adolescent testosterone or virtuoso antiques. Yet this would be a big mistake. Few genres have been as open to contamination as Heavy Rock. From classical music to Brazilian tribal music, from experimental electronics to Dance music, practically every relevant style of the last century has somehow found its’ marriage with the genre’s soaring guitars, in the works of authentic musical pioneers.

Moreover, in the past decade the underground and, alas, little known works by bands such as Earth, Stephen O’Malley‘s Sunn O))) and Khanate have pushed the boundaries one step further, transforming Black Sabbath‘s pivotal doom rifferama into something that is completely avant-garde: the so called “Drone Metal” music movement. Where the low chords and scorching sounds of metal meet the buzzing droning of avantgarde electronics/improvisation creating something that is a pure, and profoundly refined, novelty.



asbestoscape is the creative creature of Luke Shaw, a British musician seeking for his own interpretation of the genre. And what an interpretation it is. An approach that is both loyal to certain Drone/Doom metal schemes (ie. the tendency to inevitably carry melodic moments into the land of low-key cacophonics) and lugubre atmospheres, yet fully aware of all influences that may enrich its’ sound. No surprise therefore if the drum patterns relate far more to Post Rock and Industrial styles than to Doom’s minimal – almost ambient – habits. No surprise that certain guitar riffs (as on opener Artic) have a distinctly shoegazing, Kevin Shields‘ inspired sound.

Of course, this is no album for the faint of heart. It is a deeply sad, melancholic and moody piledriver of a record: yet there is something cathartic in its’ epic crescendos. Like a rainy British day, it’s an experience that can prove itself strangely appealing.

We’re very proud to present such an interesting and fresh project: listen to the album on!

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