Alunah are a band from England that plays a mixture of sludge, stoner and doom metal and this is a review of their 2013 album "White Hoarhound" which was released by Napalm Records.
The album starts out with psychedelic sounds and heavy distortion as well as some voices before going into a heavy doom metal direction along with some melodic female vocals and you can hear melody in the music along with stoner rock style solos.
As the album progresses the music gets more heavy, dark and retro sounding and the guitars and
bass bring a lot of power into the music as well as a great amount of distortion effects which really
bring the 70's feeling that is displayed on the record while the vocals remind me me of early 80's
doom metal and the music stays in a slow direction throughout the recording while also showing diversity all at the same time and on the 6th song acoustic guitars and synths are added into the music and the album closes with a hidden psychedelic track.
On this album Alunah take the 80's epic doom metal sound and they update it with modern elements of sludge and stoner rock while also bringing in influences from psychedelic music to create their own sound and they never go into fast or mid paced sections and this album is one of the best doom metal albums that has come out in years.
Song lyrics cover paganism, occultism and mythology, while the production has a very strong, powerful, heavy and professional sound where you can hear all of the musical instruments that are present on this recording as well as most of the songs being long and epic in length.
In my opinion Alunah are a very great sounding mixture of stoner, sludge and doom metal and if you are a fan of this musical genre, you should check out this band.
RECOMMENDED TRACKS INCLUDE "Dementer's Grief" "Belial's Fjord" and "Oak Ritual II".
8/5 out of 10.
Metal as Religion have included Alunah in their top 5 picks for Hard Rock Hell Festival:
"Hard Rock Hell 2013 has been labelled “Cirque Du Rock”... a Rock ‘n’ Roll circus extravaganza of grotesquely monumetal proportions. Full of twisted darkened moments and unrivalled camaraderie - and laced with the kind of pure adrenalin pumping high-octane rock ‘n’ roll you didn’t think was still achievable.This is a festival created by a circle of people who continue to know how to do it. And do it well. Aussie Rockers Airbourne and Tracer are set to join fellow countrymen Electric Mary for an all out Antipodean attack on our Homeland (Well, the principality of Wales, to be exact.) But fear not, because we have found five new tantalising treats from Europe’s darkest underbellies to tempt your tender tinnitus-sizzled ear-holes - and to get your snake-oiled boots a-groovin’. 2013 appears to be one of the best HRH bills yet"
"Birmingham based ALUNAH is a psyche/stoner/doom band which unleashes an incredible paganistic sound characterized by thick guitars, a punishing rhythm section, and earthy and hypnotic vocal melodies. Sometimes groovy, oppressive, or downright grimy depending on what the situation calls for, the songs are dark and slow without being downers! Try ‘White Hoarhound’ for a thick slice of eagle feathers and tar pit. Black vaporizing guitars bubble up like methane seepages. And the moonshine clarity of the vocal from Soph crystalizes your fancies and lifts you from doom-filled decay. But not for long"
Read more: http://metalasreligion.com/2013/07/18/hard-rock-hell-cirque-du-rock-our-first-picks/
Thanks to Native Ground for this lovely review!
"Rated by Terrorizer Magazine as the “future of doom,” Alunah brings a stimulating sound to doom metal’s promising future. Based out of Birmingham, UK and led by a female vocalist who can lash cosmic ringers to wrap heavy guitars and rushing drums for a solid psychedelic ambiance, there’s no coal shortage for the long winters with this band. Sophie’s light voice compliments and echoes through tracks for a balance of choral ecstasy in Alunah’s gloomy and pagan tones. Sophie also plays guitar along with Dave; Gaz is on bass and Jake masters percussion.
White Hoarhound is Alunah’s second album, a thorough bred piece as far as dark cosmos doom is concerned. When we search for great modern doom bands, too often we are let down by the brocals or the over-compensated “Hey man I’m dark, hear me out” often excersing lack of rhythmic composition; a worthless excuse for freedom of speech. To our enjoyment, Alunah’s instrument performance is next level fuzzstance and we’re happy to say that Sophie’s voice isn’t murdering this wonderful noise. The title track is the catch of this album; starting out immensely hairy with a drowned out groove you can fall right into. Like a tidal struggle, the push and pull of the guitars and drums spin transversely for the vocals to soar through like a sharp blade.
As theorized before, harsh environments, history of torment, and stained culture are conditions and ideals where some of the best metal and doom bands come from. Alunah capitalizes on this with cycling and distorted lows laid under medieval lyrics. During first listen, all I could think of were cold hills, damp grounds, and dense forest; just a few key visual inspirations I appreciate in great doom. The guitar work through tracks like “Oak Ritual II” compliment with blurry high notes and spinning scales that keep you dizzy enough to unstill your head while gracing lyrics keep you lined up. There are too many good reviews on this band out right now, I feel like I would be clogging the feed if I kept trying to fill this up with reworded phrases already written and read in Alunah’s support. Sometimes you just have to listen and share; that’s all this review is about! Check out Alunah’s White Hoarhound on Alunah.bandcamp.com and hear for yourself why we have a loss for words."
Read the original article here >>
It is nearing the Napalm Records / Spinning Goblin Productions vinyl release of White Hoarhound, and the good people at Kerrang Magazine have included it in this week's magazine giving it 4/5! The vinyl is available for pre-order from both Napalm Records and the Alunah store, and is officially released on 25th January.
2012! It's safe to say that in our 6 year history, this year has been our best! We released our second album, worked with some amazing people, played some great gigs, met new awesome people, caught the eye of Napalm Records and made a few end of year lists (read whose here). From a music point of view it's been our best, but we also suffered the loss of Soph's Dad John who was a big supporter of Alunah, we dedicated our upcoming vinyl to him and he will always be in our thoughts.
The year wouldn't have been what it was without the input from the following great key people, in no particular order:
Mark Hegadus at Psychedoomelic Records: He believed in us enough to release White Hoarhound on his legendary Austrian label. One of THE best things we've done.
Sebastian Muench and the whole team at Napalm Records / Spinning Goblin Productions: They will be releasing White Hoarhound on 12" vinyl on January 25th 2013, so proud to be on yet another legendary Austrian label.
Olivia Burr: Liv tirelessly sells our merch for us, provides transport when needed and handles all management queries for us!
Mona Miluski at Platinum PR: We came on board with German company Platinum PR to help promote White Hoarhound, and they have gone above and beyond to get us some amazing international press.
Greg Chandler at Priory Recording Studios: Greg recorded both of our albums, and did a sterling job on both. He totally gets us, and is an easy creative guy to work with.
Tony Reed at Heavy Head Co: Tony mixed, mastered and featured on White Hoarhound. He also re-mastered the album for vinyl, a top bloke with unlimited amounts of talent.
Mez at Heretic Promotions / Scruffy Murphys, Birmingham: Mez is our number 1 promoter of choice to work with, complete professional and all round good guy. His promotions company hosted our album launch gig this year. Mez now also comes out with us doing our sound engineering.
Alison Richards and Martin Newman at Oath Communications: An awesome duo who are working on a video for White Hoarhound as well as attending the majority of our gigs in 2012 filming and taking photos.
We must also mention the following bands, promoters, radio shows, webzines and podcasts who we've played with / for. Again, in no particular order and sorry to those we've missed:
A Pale Horse Named Death, Gentlemans Pistols, Trippy Wicked and the Cosmic Children of the Knight, Gurt, Stubb, Arkham Witch, General, Desert Storm, Conan, Gods of Hellfire, Steak, Stone Axe, Arke, Ironrat, Gringo, Shebrew, Caravan of Whores, A Million Miles, Tairrie B and My Ruin, Baron Greenback, Desert Scene, Desert Fest, Heretic Promotions, Black Bullet Live, When Planets Collide, Kerrang Radio, Johnny Doom, Metal.de, Ripple Music, Metal Hammer Germany, Grip of Delusion Radio, Terrorizer Magazine, Soggy Bog, Core of Destruction Radio, 339 Metal, Doomantia, The Soda Shop, Fast 'n' Bulbous, 411 Mania, The Temple of Perdition, The Metal Observer, Via Nocturna, Unhallowed Nation, Planet Mosh, Skrikzine, Nocturnal Hall Magazine, Sludgelord, Sleeping Shaman, X Transmission FM, WCNI Radio, Femme Metal Webzine, The Obelisk, Black Sunday Magazine, MSN Entertainment, Metal Riot...
There are so many more, but not enough hours in the day to list them alll! Thanks to everyone basically, and special thanks to those who came to our gigs, brought our merch, brought us beer and shared our drunken ramblings!
In 2013 we will release our vinyl, carry on writing for our third album, play with The Sword, Lonely Kamel and Black Moth, tour Europe including Heavy Days in Doom Town Festival in Denmark, and hopefully meet a load more awesome people! Here's to a happy new year, these were our most viewed blog posts and images of 2012...
Top 5 Most Viewed Blog Posts
1. She Came, She Saw, She Rocked Out with her Cock Out
2. Alunah Sign with Napalm Records / Spinning Goblin Productions
3. Download Alunah's White Hoarhound for Free
4. Alunah to Support The Sword
5. Terrorizer Magazine Hail Alunah as Future of Doom
Top 10 Most Viewed Images of 2012
As the first end of year lists start to roll in for 2012, it's nice to see White Hoarhound featured on some of them. Thanks to US station WCNI Radio, UK webzine The Sleeping Shaman, US webzine Fast 'n' Bulbous, US webzine 411mania.com and Norwegian webzine Skrikzine.
Thanks so much to Canadian site The Metal Observer for this very flattering and kind review!
"A young band hits it big behind the success of a strong debut album. Suddenly, engulfed in praise and playing to bigger audiences, they think they have it all figured out. They write their next album with swagger and release it with confidence; but something isn’t right. The music isn’t the same, and the second album can’t replicate whatever it was that made the first one so good. It is called the sophomore slump, and it happens all the time--after a burst of initial success, a band gets complacent; the songwriting becomes lazy, the riffs lose their edge, and the music seems less inspired.
Stoner/Doom act ALUNAH’s second release, “White Hoarhound,” finds the band turning the sophomore slump on its head and hurdling it entirely. ALUNAH don’t seem to be content with just staying good--they want to be great. And they’re getting damn close. It’s plain as day that the band is devoted to improving their sound after every release and this effort is clear because it translates directly into a better listening experience. It’s a sophomore success, so to speak.
When talking about this record, the logical starting place is the vocals. They are unique not only because they are female, but also because they are stunningly good. Soph Day’s voice is earthy and hypnotic, much like the music itself, and blends wonderfully with everything else happening on the album. I’m not sure whether Day was in charge of writing her own vocal melodies, but they are very well constructed and often drive the song forward more than any other instrument. I would actually compare her performance on “White Hoarhound” to that of a pop singer (a complement, by the way), in that the vocal lines are quite capable of solely carrying every song, although it’s never necessary given the strong instrumentation and songwriting found throughout the album.
Now I’m no expert on female-fronted Metal bands, so I can’t say this decisively. But as of right now, I consider Soph Day to be the best female vocalist in Metal, and it will likely stay that way until I find someone better. I’m not holding my breath.
The riffs found on “White Hoarhound” can be groovy, oppressive, or downright grimy depending on what the situation calls for. The guitar trudges along as if the riffs are being dragged through a thick mud, and together with the vocal lines methodically guide the songs where they need to go. The rhythm guitar work is simple and not all that varied, which is usually a recipe for disaster in this genre, where the run-times are long and the pace is lethargic. This negatively impacts a few moments, but the music manages to by and large avoid stagnation due in part to well-placed guitar solos and the fluidity of the songwriting.
“White Hoarhound” marks ALUNAH’s third straight strong release (two full lengths and an EP), and it’s decidedly their best yet. In a few short years the band has risen the ranks to become one of the more intriguing active Doom acts to come out of England. If you didn’t have them on your list of music to check out, do yourself a favor and put them near the top."
Big thanks to Ricardo Martillos for his review on Italy's Distorsioni website! This has been translated courtesy of Google...
"Very impressive rebirth of stoner rock in recent times. A style of music that was born in the end yes with Kyuss and the like but heavily sinks its roots much further back, in two fundamental bands and historical as Black Sabbath and Blue Cheer. The taste for the occult and the esoteric of many groups who followed those paths are served in my opinion more to confuse the listener and imagine who knows what mysteries than anything else, the music in any case, links them to the past and this is what that interests us. The Alunah come from Birmingham, not coincidentally also the starting point of Black Sabbath, and they retrace the footsteps, or at least the intention is. Unlike their glorious masters do not have a frontman Ozzy Osbourne as crazy but at least the blonde singer and guitarist Soph Day has un'ugola enough to support and maneuver the heavy arsenal put on by his companions in adventure, Dave Day, guitar, Gaz Imber on bass and Jake Mason on drums. After you have made a considerable reputation as a live act torrential have finally decided to send in the studio all the grit discharged on stage.
Two records in the 2012, at a distance of a few months, the debut already arsonist of "Call of the Avernus" , however conceived two years earlier and the latter " White Hoarhound " consecrate them among the brightest lights of doom-scene stoner. Right from the initial torque Demeter's grief and White Hoarhound, we are immersed in the river of lava called Alunah, beautiful voice Soph, the irresistible title track, the guitars sound dark and heavy, Kyuss meanwhile peep around the corner.Compared to the great sons of the desert boys Birmingham have their greater expansion of songs and more space while remaining dedicated to flames guitar solos kept to a minimum as it is typical of the genre. Proof of this the three long tracks, Belial's fjord , The Chester midsummer watch parade and Oak Ritual II, torrid final with a superb David Day at the six-string, 25 minutes total for all three tracks, excellent business presentation to a live performance I imagine expanded dramatically. Disc of great emotional impact, will please the fans of the genre psycho-doom but also a great opportunity for new members to approach music in a continent still boiling lava."
- Ricardo Martillos
Hard City in Greece recently spoke to Soph about the recording of White Hoarhound, the loss of her Dad, our recent signing to Napalm Records & Spinning Goblin Productions, and the inspiration behind her lyrics. This is the transcription, the original interview can be found here:
Hi. Your new album borrows the name of a flower, White Hoarhound. Why? Is there any symbolism behind it?
Hey! Yeah kind of, it derives from the mint family and the root can be used for coughs and general lung conditions. When we started writing for the album my Dad was diagnosed with lung cancer, I visited Wales around this time and read about the White Horehound being indigenous to the Great Orme which is a beautiful imposing headland in Llandudno. I'd visited the Great Orme since I was a child, and had many happy childhood memories with my parents there, I not only fell in love with the name of the plant but also felt it apt to my situation. That's where I wrote the majority of the lyrics to the title track White Hoarhound (we changed the spelling slightly), on the headland looking out to the sea.
This is the second album you released in the last couple of years. Can you tell us about the differences between Call Of Avernus and White Hoarhound?
We were writing Avernus really from when we started, perhaps without even realising it, so we spent 4 years from 2006 - 2010 writing and growing, and in that time had a new bass player join the band. Hoarhound was written in about a year, and Gaz our bassist who joined in 2009, had more of an input. He has a different style of writing to any of us and it's really cool to have that variation. We spent more time producing Hoarhound too - this time we used Greg Chandler and Tony Reed as opposed to Greg Chandler and James Plotkin previously.
How much time it gets for you to record White Hoarhound?
We spent 5 days in the studio recording, we're really lucky to have Greg Chandler's Priory Studios near to us in Canwell. Greg plays in Esoteric and has produced SerpentCult and Moss previously, so we're blessed to have him live very near to us. Tony Reed is in America so we spent time going back and forth over email to get the mixing and mastering done, we've met a few times before when we've played with his band Stone Axe, so we have that relationship there also.
Who is the main composer in your new album? I think that Sophie wrote all the lyrics, am I right?
Yeah I write all the lyrics and vocal melody, and Dave and Gaz write the riffs. Jake and I do have input regarding how songs should be structured but my baby is the vocals!
Your music is dark and mysterious, and your songs sound a bit sad from times to times. What is the inspiration behind music and lyrics on your new album?
I see the lyrics as being a celebration of life, and yeah life can be very dark, mysterious and sad, but also happy and uplifting. You need to have the sad parts to realise how beautiful the uplifting parts are. I see that also as an apt way to describe the music. It's no secret that my lyrics have a strong pagan influence, but we're by no means a pagan band. The other guys don't necessarily share my beliefs but I'm lucky that they allow me to be creative with what I want to sing about, and how I want to sing it.
Finally, what is the best description for your music?
Heavy Rock Music
If someone asked you to pick a song from your new album as your favorite track, what would be the answer?
For meaning and symbolism I'd choose "White Hoarhound" but for pure listening pleasure I'd choose "Oak Ritual II"
Have you got a feeling that if you have to record White Hoarhound from scratch, you would like to change few things, adding or removing, for you make it better, or you think, White Hoarhound is the best music that you can compose these days.
Were all really happy with the album, most of the songs got re-written, a couple of them have had quite a few versions. We could have released this months ago but we felt that we could do better, and I believe we have. So no, all the changes we wanted to make have been made. However, we intend to be sticking around for a good few years yet, and if we got into the mindset that this is the best we could compose, we may as well give up. You should always strive to do better, always!
The music you are played is inspired from psychedelia of 60s, Doom metal as well as NWOBHM and Stoner. A great variety of sounds don’t you think so? How difficult is for a band to create a unique sound nowadays?
Yeah, it's always going to be difficult to create a new sound when you're influenced by such striking music as psychedelia or doom. However, lazy people are the ones who say that you cannot be original nowadays. There are always new ways of doing things, and I'm sure there are new sounds just waiting to be created, and new songs waiting to be sung. If you start out wanting to sound like someone else, or wanting to make money, you're never going to sound original. If you make music for yourself, the chances are you'll create something new. I strongly believe that although we get compared to a lot of female fronted bands, if you listen to us properly, there isn't anyone else who truly sounds like us.
In our days, there are so many bands around, so many e-zines and magazines, sometimes there is an information overload and music lovers often get lost by all these new albums and unknown bands. What is the biggest advantage on your band, which will help you to stand out?
The internet can be a good AND bad thing for bands for sure, some bands only rely on social networking. It pisses me off to hear bands slagging off Facebook, if you're not happy, get out there and get your own website which YOU control - you can do what the hell you like then! In Alunah we design our own website, flyers, posters and cd/vinyl artwork, we play tonnes of shows, we flyer gigs, put posters up, don't cause shit with promoters and other bands, be cool to people, and up until recently did our own PR. We're different in musical style to other bands, it's taken us 6 years of hard slog, but hopefully ears are starting to prick up now.
Nearly a month ago, Sophie lost her father, and I would like to say a big sorry for her loss. I also read he was a great Alunah's fan. How this has affected the band’s life?
Thank you. Yes, I lost my dad in October, he was very dear to me and I loved him with all my heart, like I said he influenced the "White Hoarhound" lyrics. It was a true honour to have the song played at his funeral, all the band were present and it was beautiful to have nearly 200 of his family and friends hear it in his honour. My husband Dave is in the band so not only have I lost a dad, he has lost a father-in-law so yeah it affected us greatly. It obviously affected Gaz and Jake too as we're a very close knit band. However, my Dad wouldn't have been happy for us to put the band on hold, so after a month's break we're back at it and working again. In fact, we have a vinyl version of Hoarhound coming which we have dedicated to his memory.
Can you please tell us about your plans from this day forth?
Yeah we have recently signed to Napalm Records who with their sub-label Spinning Goblin Productions will be releasing Hoarhound on limited edition white and green gatefold 12" vinyls. They're available now for pre-order from their store, and will be released officially on January 25th 2013. We'll be playing with label mates The Sword in January also at Wolverhampton Slade Rooms, and are planning a European tour in May.
Thank you very much for finding the time to be with us. I’m sure that Alunah’s future will be great, and I hope that your music will be better and better in the next years to come. Have you got something last to add?
Thanks so much for giving us your time also, and for the kind words. Keep checking our website http://www.alunah.co.uk and Facebookhttp://www.facebook.com/alunah.doom for updates and further info. Cheers!
Read the White Hoarhound review by Hard City:
Thanks to Robert Müller of Metal Hammer Germany for featuring us in "The dead corner" ("Der Tote Winkel"), a feature talking about 5 new albums he has recently discovered, and of which are now part of his favourite playlists. This time he's discussing doom metal, and has been very kind to include Alunah!
"Let's stay on the island and bring a formula into the game, which enjoys a certain popularity: Seventies-riffs and a female singer. Both what ALUNAH have, but their second album WHITE HOARHOUND (Psychedoomelic) rocks the whole occult rock pile neatly in the corner. Straightforward Black Sabbath worship with equally straightforward songs and fine emotional moments, a timeless piece."
Thanks so much to Andreas Stappert of Rock Hard Magazine in Germany for the awesome review!
"Pleasantly relaxed island-Doom with front lady. Coming from the English Midlands, ALUNAH celebrate on their second album a completely unagitated, knee deep rooted in the seventies, with various psychedelic sprinklings and Stoner-groove elements garnished genre variant. Through the melodic- engrossed vocal style of singer / guitarist Soph Day, here and there memories of Jex Thoth become awake. But unlike the Americans ALUNAH sound much less psychedelic and rock significantly more straight. Best fits the comparison with the Brit-Doomsters The Wounded Kings, because in both bands the Black Sabbath and Pentagram influences similar clearly come to the fore. ALUNAH dooms here but despite all heaviness on a pleasantly dreamy level."
"It’s been a little while since I’ve done one of these posts, but I do need take a step back from time to time and stop seeking out new and awesome music and spend a little time appreciating what is already in my collection, whether it’s my new CDs or revisiting a classic. But enough, as you may have noticed I’ve taken a liking to this recent explosion of doom and psychedelic metal and rock. The bands that employ a female singer also gain bonus points in my book as I feel that a female voice fits this style of music perfectly. It never comes off as being over-dramatic ala Nightwish or just trying to be ‘one of the boys’ too hard like Arch Enemy. It just works and feels natural. So given, whenever I come across a female fronted doom-psyche band, I need to check ‘em out. Most of the time, like almost everything, it’s hit or miss (leaning more often to the hit side), and in a few rare cases it’s one hell of a homerun hit. Such is the case with today’s Tale From Bandcamp.
White Hoarhound by the UK-based Alunah is an album really lacking surprises or polish, and it is for those reasons it shines. Think of walking through a forest. It has trails paved in dirt, trees grow in all directions, a rhyme, reason, or flow is lacking, but as you make your way amid the wood and foliage a sense of beauty pervades. The imperfections of all that surrounds you come together as a whole to create a familiar and always awe-inspiring world. Such is so with this record. The dirty riffs build great atmospheres in tandem with the sultry vocals culling in occult themes as slow and mid paced rhythms work to move your body into a trance. So, give a listen to White Hoarhound and if you dig on it buy yourself a copy or at least share it with your friends. Enjoy and let us know your opinion on the record! Peace Love and Metal!!!"
(translated from German)
"I only had to ALUNAH to bump the nose. But even with the reference song White Hoarhound the British have played in my heart. There are classic with a dash of psychedelic doom Stoner Metal, in the style of old Saint Vitus and Pentagram, or Cathedral. In dominating the enchanting sublime voice of Soph Day, which reminds me of Jex Thoth. Indeed, it is especially the vocals, which imprints a gradually downright hypnotized and ALUNAH this unique stamp. Soph's voice is clear and strong, not too high or too deep, lined with a little reverb and fits the music perfectly!
As for speeds, ALUNAH remain moderate. They neither falling into stasis doomy yet they break speed records. Nevertheless, the British are on their second album quite varied. My favorites on White Hoarhound are the title track and Belial's Fjord, which initially starts out very rhythmically with tribal-like drums, and then is pretty rough. ALUNAH can also gently, like the semi-acoustic Oak ritual proves the first.
Compared with the debut of Call Of Avernus is ALUNAH have evolved tremendously over the past two years. What began as unexcited influenced Black Sabbath 70s rock was ground to White Hoarhound a classic of British Doom Metal. A great album! If the Terrorizer says this is ALUNAH the future of the Doom Metal, I could not agree more!"
(Translated from Portugese)
Considered, not long ago, as the future of doom metal conceptualized by Terrorizer, the British Alunah edited this
summer's second album titled White Hoarhound. Natural Birmingham, birthplace of Black Sabbath, the Alunah clearly show the legacy of his countrymen.
The 7 themes that make White Hoarhound do Alunah of a band of doom metal, as indeed you might have guessed, this sound mix though with some stoner, sludge and groove metal. With the excellent production of Greg Chandler, parade along the hard rhythms and songs in slow tempo with long, dark and gloomy atmosphere, with smaller and weighed tones predominate. A certain melody and some atmospheric music also involves the White Hoarhound, contributing to such performance vocalist and guitarist Soph Day
Certainly lovers of doom metal here are more a "pearl" something lost in the vast universe of metal. Editing is the PsycheDOOMelic Records, which already accustomed us to launch high quality field of doom.
(Translated from Italian)
I had not yet happened to run into a doom metal band with female singer and I have to admit that it is a pleasant discovery. The four components are Alunah from Midlands, United Kingdom, and the latter work, "White Hoarhound" is their second album, the first for PsycheDOOMelic Record. Seven tracks for a release that deserves careful listening, in which the atmosphere proposals do not give the listener never excessive and redundant heavy doom.
It happens however that the slow rhythmic and instrumental minimalism is offset by a surprising counterpoint voice. The female voice is definitely a big plus, personality and well adapted to the environment even though it is far from gloomy, but rather powerful and vital. Reverbs and reverse shots blur the edges of an otherwise very decided tone.
I loved the sound of guitars, distorted and dark so that the sound does not be too overwhelming when placed next to an item so energetic. In addition, devices such as solos, rhythms and sped to the synth sound carpets help to dampen the linearity of the slow metal without distorting it. As well as tracks like "Oak Ritual I" represent a moment of breath tight in the mood of the disc, especially appreciated for the office introspective, to which the item was accompanied by the unique sound of clean guitar and keyboard arrangements of the background.
I wonder what influences may suffer most, but I feel obliged to secure the passage by his fellow Black Sabbath, of course, for the lesson of "Paranoid". Mix well the instrumental parts and those sung, the Alunah then reach a result very homogeneous, dare I say almost recognizable style. And I think that smart is the most important result of our English.
(Translated from German)
The name Alunah stands for six years now for a mix of stoner and doom metal from Birmingham. Under the label PsycheDOOMelic Records (please what?) The troops posted around singer Soph Day now become her second studio album. Alongside the band is also represented on a total of nine different known compilations.
Why do I, as the true followers of the faster subgenre of metal, I just have such an album rausgepickt for reviewing, can be answered quite simply: It had just gone. And perhaps waiting at the end of the rainbow indeed a pot of gold for me.
Here we go with the song of Demeter's grief, as one would expect from just doom metal, slowly begins to slowly and slowly culminates ends. But this must not be the same but bad that even the master of Black Sabbath made it clear in some of their songs. About the, admittedly unspectacular, instrumental build floats the voice of singer Soph Day, which gives the dish but a very tasteful touch.
Belial's Fjord, the third of the seven songs, opens with a brief but atmospheric drum part, which directly at me the pictures of a hunt through a dark forest produces. I should probably go to the shrink some of my confidence. Here,
too, Day's voice floats back almost elfin about the instrumental sounds. However, this song is much more powerful than I would have expected from the beginning of the CD.
With Oak ritual I and II, the album sounds like, as you'd expect: Atmospheric, dark and definitely fits the current fall time - just not quite as moist. With just the solos in the second part of the penultimate song of the album to add a
whole lot of variety.
Conclusion: Alunah deliver with White Hoarhound from an album that at hardcore Doom fans should not be missing on the shelf. Even if the instruments (except for Oak Ritual II) all other sound as great variety, fits through the vocals all together into a coherent whole. The pot of gold at the end of the rainbow I have not found, but at least a piece of
torn clouds on a rainy autumn evening.
(Translated from Polish)
I tend to have a tendency to przegapiania good, fresh bands. Every man is sitting on some websites, blogs or other webzinach, talking to słuchającymi similar note, and this nasty ailment can not get rid of. Therefore, the "White Hoarhound" is my first contact with Alunah, even though this is the second big album of the operating since 2007, the English crew. I regret that I did not know them before.
I think every fan of stoner / doom sound immediately Alunah likes the new proposal. In "White Hoarhound" consists of a very good compositions, full of heavy riffs, but given the relatively mild as amended, and such playing great, very full of bits and vocal melodies Sophie Day. Imagine Acid King stripped of Hawkwind influence and focused on strictly
stoner / Doom playing. That's how I see this album and I do not think I have to add that it is a compliment. It seems that in the person of singer and guitarist worthy successor Alunah have Lori S, which is something no hurry to release
his new team. The quality of British second album is also confirmed that many of the verses and the chorus is in your head long after listening, it's hard not to hum to himself the perfect title track. Listen, and you will see that i was gonna get this "ailment".
"White Hoarhound" is an album that probably will end up in this year's totals. The reason is simple, it can very quickly charmed, and the feeling is not like a soap bubble bursts. For this album is very smooth, no composition does not stand out from the high-quality whole. I highly recommend it.
Formally known as Aluna, (No massive change then) Midlands, UK based female fronted Stoner Doom Metal quartet ALUNAH have unleashed their brand new opus “White Hoarhound”, the follow up to 2010′s debut studio album “Call of Avernus”. Hailing from the birth place of heavy fuzzed up Doom, Alunah seem like the perfect band to take British Stoner Doom forward beyond 2012.
Starting in a slow and calculating fashion, Alunah soon unleash a stream of groove laden beats and melodies to seriously tickle your inner Doomster! Content to amble along at their own down tuned pace, Alunah are seemingly in no rush to up the tempo and their harmonies and riff-age are a joy to listen too, yet when the mood takes them and a little more speed and groove is added to the mix, they become a full on catchy Stoner Doom beast, all topped off nicely with haunting clean female vocals.
What I found whilst listening to “White Hoarhound” is that Alunah don’t exactly take the bull by the horns and grab a hold of your attention the way some bands do. this is a shame but not so much of a problem as the album has a more flowing quality, and as your listening too it you’ll finding yourself sliding deep into a comfortable state of relaxation as the bands music washes over you in waves of groove drenched melodies. Every element of Alunah plays his or her part to the letter and as a result the band appears tight, but on top of that they create nice songs with excellent song structure and never does their out put wander into the realms of boredom.
Some Doom is there to rock your world, to come at you with massive crushing riffs and static fueled fuzz. Alunah though are different. i find their approach to be that of pure entertainers whose sole purpose is to make great sounding songs and be damned if they are not as heavy as some other bands of the same genre. By sticking to what they wish to achieve they have created an album that sounds superb and that should adorn any Doomsters collection! “White Hoarhound” will transport you into the collective psyche of one of the UK’s best Stoner Doom components and leave you floating weightlessly in a sea of good vibes and killer melodies!
[8/10 - LUKE HAYHURST]
(translated from Norwegian)
Alunah is a quartet from Birmingham, England. They play a good mix of psych, stoner and doom metal. The band consists of two guitarists, Soph Day which is also the vocalist and guitarist Dave Day. Rhythm section consists of bassist Gaz Imber and Jake Mason on drums. Alunah be associated with bands like Orange Goblin, Trouble, Paradise Lost and Witchcraft. In 2010 they came up with the critically acclaimed debut album Call Of Avernus and
is now concerned with their second album, White Hoarhound which came out in September of PSYCHEDOOMELIC Records.
As the scholarly music enthusiast, you probably are, you realize that Alunah parts hometown with THE Black Sabbath from Birmingham, and there is no doubt that Alunah have done our homework. This shows that the degree of White Hoarhound, here they offer good old-fashioned quality doom. Despite a debut album that was praised to the skies, has not Alunah declared themselves satisfied and tops the previous release in every possible way. That's
promise is Soph Day that stands for, she has gone from being an ordinary singer to be in the top echelon of female doom vocalists.
White Hoarhound is a fabulous album of 50 minutes divided in 7 songs. First song up is Demeter's Grief, here's a seductive intro followed by catchy riffs and groovy bass lines. Then comes the title track White Hoarhound with its epic riffs are a bit of a murky affair. The mood is somber, but very alluring and this is clearly the album's highlight.
Thanks to the talented musicians who also are skilled in songwriting is White Hoarhound packed with solid songs, which one tops the other. I can name songs that Belial's Fjord, Chester Midsummer Watch Parade and The end comes in dual format, Oak and Oak Ritual In Ritual II. The former acts as a sort of intro to the grand epic in 10 minutes that ends this masterpiece. For it is the Alunah has created with White Hoarhound, an instant classic that will
remain for decades to come.
(translated from Swedish)
Once upon a time ... So begins the often good stories, this one is no different. It was a long time ago, in the city of Birmingham. Specifically, in the year of our Lord 1969 that the heavy riff was born. Sure, there had been heavy riffs before, but this riff was a little darker, a little heavier, a little meaner. Riff echoed through the streets of Birmingham, bounced between houses' walls and eventually become too big for the small town. riff went out into the world. Some hearts, which was a little truer, embraced the riff and the love that we had created more and heavier, darker riffs. Some chose to call this doom riffs. So it happened that in 2006 returned doom-riff to its origin in the city of Birmingham where it took root in the hearts of the people who formed the band named Alunah a quartet from Birmingham.
The band was formed in 2006 and consists of Soph Day - Vocals and Guitar Dave Day - Guitar Gaz Imber - Bass Jake Mason - Drums They have released two full-length album, Call Of Avernus and now White Hoarhound and a couple is always fun with good music and for some reason I always get a little extra happy when it's good music that is kvinnofrontad. Alunah Plays a natural romanticized psychedelic doom with Pagan influenced texter.Det is much fuzz, heavy riffs, rumbling bass and drums driven. Above this hovers Soph's vocals. A winning combo that magazine Terrorizer Magazine proclaimed that "Future of Doom". Anyway, the first album was really good. With hand number two takes a step forward and confirms that it is to be reckoned with. Because this is a really good album composed with very crude dark heaviness and ambience without for that matter become depressed. Really good! The only thing I can complain about is that it feels a little short.
(Translated from Italian)
"White Hoarhound" is the latest effort in the study of British Alunah, Doom Metal project clearly of Old School. Inspired by the mythical Black Sabbath, set off a spiral of ancestral emotions that surround us with magic. Songs by hypnotic rhythms, are the settings of their trademark, given the minimal approach of the tools found there. No virtuosity, only a carpet of soft colors dusted by a very vocal segment chameleon. While we are faced with an unusual (for the genre) female voice, admire his stand at ease in this context. In this sense, we appreciate the
tone, becoming the backbone of the concept of "evocative" of the band. The pieces run off pleasant, thanks to lysergic melodies that will make your heart beat to fans of the genre. The simplicity then can win, thanks to a
charm ancient, but not for this withered"
Big thanks to Alternative Female Voices Magazine for featuring Alunah in their current issue. Their website can be found at http://www.afvmagazine.com/ and the October issue is out now. We have transcribed the interview with Soph, and their review of White Hoarhound below:
Interview with Soph
To begin with could you introduce Alunah to AFV readers?
We're a heavy rock band from various areas around Birmingham and Coventry in the English Midlands. We've been described as a doom band, a stoner band, a heavy psych band... we're all that but mainly a heavy rock band.
When did the band form and how did you all meet?
We began in the Summer of 2006, Dave and I have known each other for the best part of 15 years and we met Jake at a Sonic Lord gig (one of Dave's previous bands). Gaz joined in 2009 to replace our previous bassist, Gaz is a guitarist in General and we met through playing various shows together on their home turf in Coventry.
Alunah's an intriguing name,how did you come up with it?
We were originally called Aluna without the 'h' but after a few copyright issues we had to change the spelling. It was originally named after the Mindfunk song of the same name. After reading around the Aluna name we found that there were many nature based connotations to the name. These subject matters have influenced us, and have helped us evolve the themes around the music. We much prefer the Alunah spelling, like you say, it seems more intriguing somehow.
You're a doom metal band that sound like you have other influences too, what bands do you listen to that have a bearing on your sound?
Yeah we have a wide range of influences outside of the stoner and doom scenes, from grunge to thrash and from '60s psychedelia to NWOBHM. Between us we love bands such as Sabbath (obviously), Zeppelin, Maiden, Alice in Chains, Soundgarden, The Doors, Napalm Death, Dinosaur Jr, The Melvins, Neil Young, Acid King, Cream... so many to mention but we listen to such a variety and I hope that does show in the music. We don't just want to be a one dimensional band.
How would you describe your own sound in no more than five words?
Seventies Inspired Heavy Doomed Grooves
Who writes the lyrics and what are the main subjects you write about?
I write the lyrics and they're based on many different things. The central theme is that of the natural world and I'm mainly interested in English pagan history and it's practices, as well as myth and magic. I'm lucky to live in a country
steeped in such history, our land has experienced a lot in its ancient years and it intrigues me as to what exactly it has seen. If only the earth could talk to us, many secrets would be uncovered. For example, Chester Midsummer
Watch Parade is about a solstice parade which began in Chester in the 1100s whereas Demeter's Grief is about the goddess of the harvest and the grief she felt for her daughter Persephone. I'm mainly inspired by interest rather than
experience, the track White Hoarhound is me merging the two together... I'll leave it at that, I like people to take what they need or want from the songs.
Tell us all about the new album,the concept behind it, where can people get hold of it?
There's not a concept as such, lyrically anyway. Musically we knew the sound we wanted to create and the direction we wanted to go in. Happily, I'd say we have achieved what we set out to do and we believe the album flows in a much natural way than our debut "Call of Avernus" did. People can get it from stores such as HMV and also online (digitally and physically) from HMV, Play, Amazon etc. They can also get it from our label PsycheDOOMelic, our online store and also digitally from our Band Camp page. People can email us at email@example.com for more info about stockists etc.
Do you have any gigs lined up or a tour?
For the rest of this year we have some great one-off gigs which can be found on our website www.alunah.co.uk. We are in the process of planning a big tour next year, it is in the early stages at the moment but it's going to see us visiting places we have never visited before which is exciting!
You get to hear about all sorts of funny or weird things happening to bands in the studio or on the road,has anything happened to you?
Haha well, generally if it's going to happen, it will happen! I think I've mentioned some of these before but I've had loads of electric shocks at gigs - one in particular where I've had to sing into a sweaty sock to avoid the shock (luckily the problem was fixed before too long), we've had live vibes being killed when being recognised by an ex-
colleague who shouted "are you Dave from the salad factory", Jake our drummer falling off the back of the stage, backdrops falling onto Jake, lava projectors falling off stage plunging us into darkness... all sorts hahaha!
Each band member gets to choose just one album to take on a major tour, what would you each pick that you just couldn't do without?
Great question! Jake said he'd pick "Floodland" by Sisters of Mercy, Gaz would take "Above" by Mad Season, Dave "Mirror Ball" by Neil Young and I would definitely take "Cheap Thrills" by Big Brother and the Holding Company.
Is there anything you'd like to add
Just to say thanks so much to you guys for the support, and to everyone who has brought the new album, took the time to write about it or got off their arses to come see us live. It is very much appreciated, news and updates can be found on www.alunah.co.uk or www.facebook.com/alunah.doom. Cheers!
White Hoarhound Review
Doom metal can, if the people playing it aren’t careful, sound a bit like a bad school dinner, a stodgy unappetising mess covered in lumpy custard like vocals. So few bands lack the understanding of how far to slow down the pace, how far to take the distortion, how miserable to sing each tune, that even hardened metal fans often shun the genre. However when it’s done right, when the band have done their sums and when you have a little bit of something new to offer, it can sound superb, as it does here with Alunah coming across like a Sabbath / Cathedral hybrid with the queen of the damned at the mic. Sure the songs are long, but they always stay interesting, yes there’s a shed load of
distortion but it’s never over done and the riffs are just the huge meaty affairs that you need to give everything the gravitas that makes doom really work. Then we come to what gives Alunah and ‘White Hoarhound’ that little bit of stardust, the vocals of Soph Day. If Ozzy Osbourne had a little sister then this is what she would sound like, particularly on the stand out title track which is simply brilliant. Not a custard covered mess then, this is much more Ferrero Roche, made with dark chocolate of course.
Birmingham, the planet’s epicentre of doom! After the legend that is Black Sabbath and so many others who followed in their footsteps, it’s time for Alunah. With a slow, grooving, slightly psychedelic sound and feel, their the second album ‘White Hoarhound’ is going to take over the world. As this particular style is almost 40 years old, there’s not that many new angles, but it’s like watching majestic mountains or the rolling waves, it’s cut from, and by, everlasting beauty. With sleazy guitars and just a pinch of NWOBHM you’ll easily be drawn in the the lair of Alunah. The band play a style which hasn’t changed since the seventies, but caught in that strange little bubble with them, unaffected by time you will feel the incredible high that is pure uncut DOOM. Like a siren, they’re beckoning you toward your fate, to crash your ship on the rocks of ‘White Hoarhound’. You won’t be able to resist the urge, so all listeners, beware… Martijn Welzen
Huge thanks to the guys at The Soda Shop for picking White Hoarhound as their Daily Bandcamp album, especially in such a special month for cancer awareness. The Soda Shop reviewed the album back in August:
"Alunah are about to unleash some great doom metal upon the world. White Hoarhound is the third release from the band and the followup to 2010s highly acclaimed Call of Avernus.
The album opens with “Demeter’s Grief” which is a low key, fuzzed out and groovy song.”White Hoarhound” follows next. It’s a bit more upbeat. Soph’s voice really makes this song soar. “Belial’s Fjord” is one of those songs with the epic build up, but just as you think it’s going to explode with drums blaring and guitars slinging everywhere, you get thrown for a curve. The song is actually one of those slow headbanging songs. “The Offering” is heavy and fuzzy but a bit closer to a classic rock track more than anything. It’s probably the least doomy song on the album. For some reason I can’t help but think Alice in Chains when I hear this song. “Chester Midsummer Watch Parade” is a bit mellower tune but still grooves nicely. The guitar solo to end the track is fantastic. The closing tracks are “Oak Ritual I” and “Oak Ritual II.” The first is really soft and mellow. It’s more acoustic compared to the second which returns to the slow, down tuned, and fuzzy doom that the band is known for.
So far, 2012 has been good for female fronted doom and hard rock. There have been great releases by (and not limited to) Christian Mistress, Royal Thunder, and Black Moth. Alunah is certainly on that list. Soph’s vocals are fantastic as always. They add to the atmosphere of the album and really stand out. I’m convinced that there is no Alunah without Soph. Her vocals are the backbone and the personality of the band. Not to take away from the other members of course as they all bring their own style to the band and help keep it from sounding like half the other bands out there. It’s clear that Alunah isn’t trying to sound like anybody but themselves. White Hoarhound was mixed and mastered by Tony Reed (Stone Axe, Mos Generator). Tony has a great ear for production. Once again his work has turned out a winner.Listen to the title track below and get your album as soon as it’s release"
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Upcoming Alunah Gigs >>
Friday 31st March
The Chameleon, Nottingham
Thursday 6th April
The Flapper, Birmingham
Friday 7th April
Saturday 8th April
Sunday 9th April
The Lounge, London
Saturday 6th May
MFC, Coevorden (NL)
Sunday 7th May
Route 66, Dusseldorf (DE)
Monday 8th May
Music City, Antwerp (BE)
Tuesday 9th May
Wednesday 10th May
Immerhin, Würzburg (DE)
Thursday 11th May
Coq d'Or, Olten (CH)
Friday 12th May
Bloom, Mezzago (IT)