Ufomammut – “Oro: Opus Alter” Quick Review

Ufomammut – Oro: Opus Alter
Genre: Doom Metal/Psychedelic

Label: Neurot Recordings

The mighty Ufomammut are a psychedelic and experimental doom trio from Italy, known for their long and spacious jams. If you’re not familiar with the band, just imagine the progressiveness of Pink Floyd mixed with the riff worship of Neurosis and Electric Wizard and so you have Ufomammut – who have been active since the early 2000’s. Vocals are usually pretty sparse throughout the band’s discography too; and then usually in forms of atmospheric screams.

“Oro: Opus Alter” is their seventh full-length album, as well as their second album of 2012 following “Oro: Opus Primum”. Both of these albums are combined to make ten movements, the separating albums representing two chapters with five tracks each. With the second half of this instalment, we get just under 43-minutes of doom, each track ranging from 6 to 12 minutes.

The album starts with Oroborus, beginning with whirring electronics, eventually joined by this dark, creeping bassline. Through the first few minutes of the song, the riff just intensifies through levels, the drums getting more prominent and the guitars slightly louder and more layers. It’s almost reminiscent of Nine Inch Nails’ Just Like You Imagined in terms of it’s build in tension. Eventually the pace changes up as the track reaches its climax, levelling out with these seemingly endless synths, before dropping back into it’s earlier nature and withdrawing through the layers.

Luxon has a more droney approach, going at a slug’s pace of pounding drums and chugging guitar, while backed with these very trippy synths and reverbed vocals – but imagine that slug was 80 miles tall and leaving devastated cities in its wake. The bass in particular is just so muddy and thick, as if you can feel every vibrating particle of its strings. Heavy stuff.

Then there’s the final track, Deityrant, a brooding behemoth of a track with thick and low guitars almost crackling under the bass. For the most part it features a pretty energetic riff (for a doom track) with these bouncing drums that just makes it hard not to bob your head to. There also seems to be a sample of a woman or child talking, but it’s so lathered in the distortion that it’s hard to make it out, creating a fairly eerie effect once muffled screams come into play. Eventually the strings just ring out, as synths take over for the remainder of the song with drones and ambience – ending the album like a smooth comedown from a high.

In whole, this album is a force to reckon with, a fine specimen in experimental titanic doom/sludge. Considering the length of the songs, the al If you like your riffs slow and heavy, along with experimentation and progressive traits, then this is right up your alley. If you’ve been itching for anything remotely as infectious and crushing as Bongripper’s “Satan Worshipping Doom”, be sure to check this out.

8/10
Favourite tracks: Deityrant, Oroborus.

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