Man, I really dug Clamfight’s second record, which came out almost five years ago. In tr00 none-more-kvlt fashion, they put out a live cassette tape that was limited to 20 copies in 2014, but no one has really heard from them since… until now.
Their aptly named third album offers five tracks in just under 45 minutes, out on Italian imprint Argonauta Records. “Whale Road” starts off with a tom-heavy tribal drum track, in stark contrast to a mellow, slide-blues guitar lick. This 11-minute epic takes a while to really get going, with a post-sludge approach akin to the last couple Neurosis albums, right down to the Scott Kelly-style vocals, with a chorus channeling Steve von Till. The extended guitar solo that starts around the 4:30 mark leans much more towards traditional, even progressive metal, leading us into a slow-burn melodic passage on which the drums feature prominently.
“Selkie” is a little more straight-forward, downtrodden doom, combining the pain ‘n anguish of Crowbar with the sparse ‘n gloomy outlook of The Gates of Slumber. And it has a few good riffs to headbang to, including a tasty mid-paced stoner-rock riff section past the five-minute mark. “Echoes in Stone” brings it nice ‘n slow, adding some airy female vocals to an eerie mix, sounding sorta like Kylesa stuck in first gear. (They do pick up the pace somewhat in the final two minutes.)
The instrumental “Eynhallow” serves as a five-minute interlude ahead of 12-minute closing track “History of the Earls of Orkney.” Beginning with a military snare and a longing, languid guitar line, this tune leans more on the mellow side, with an extended, Mark Knopfler-style solo in the opening minutes, before returning to more progressive stoner-rock territory with plenty of tempo changes. They really unleash their inner Elder on this one!