Not too familiar with this Portland outfit, but Atriarch have been described as a head-on collision between post-sludge and new wave, which seemed intriguing enough for me to listen up. The fact that heavy-rock luminaries Billy Anderson and Brad Boatright had a hand in mixing and mastering is also a good sign; the production really gives the songs a big boost, as a certain new-wave aficionado might say. 😉
Oddly enough, “Entropy” starts off with some eerie chants over what might be a sitar or even a didgeridoo, intercut with evil whispers uncharacteristic of either genre. That said, there is certainly a shade of Neurosis in the tribal drumbeats as the languid, longing vocals take on a more gothic dimension. We’re about halfway through this track before we get that first riff, and it’s not exactly NeurIsis material. Don’t listen to much post-goth stuff, but think (insert Bauhaus reference here) or something.
“Collapse” is somewhat more akin to Through Silver in Blood, but there aren’t too many tempo changes to be heard here, as it’s more of a steady clamour. We definitely get some doomy downstrokes atop the military-style drumbeat on “Revenant” before they take things further down to death-doom territory a la Coffins. After an opening black-metal barrage, “Bereavement” marches along a similarly slow and downtrodden path, before picking things back up in a fashion much akin to Inter Arma.
Never thought I’d say this, but after listening to their Relapse Records debut, Atriarch’s early work might not be new wave enough for me…