Thursday 23 March 2023


Majestica, Therion-live. ex-Captain Crimson bassist/guitarist/vocalist Chris David had a sound in his head, a sound that merged the doom of his fellow Swedes Candlemass and Witchcraft with the polished electric blues of the USA's workaholic guitarist Joe Bonamassa. To bring this vision to life David needed to recruit musicians who shared his vision and so in came Richard Eriksson on drums, Mattias Linusson on Hammond organ and  Andreas Eriksson on guitar to record an EP of songs under the collective name of Wizdoom. Now whether this line up is set in stone or has been put together by David just for this project Desert Psychlist does not know but given the strength of the songs on the bands debut "Trolldoom"(Moving Air Music) and the way these guys bring those songs to life, we hope its the former rather than the latter.

Given David's work with Therion its not surprising that elements of polished symphonic metal creep into Wizdoom's groove from time to time but fear not you lovers of the gnarly riff, those elements are just that... elements and on the whole "Trolldoom" is all about the doom. Opening number "Doomed Fleet" is a prime example of David's vision for Wizdoom its gnarled riffs and pounding rhythms are of the sort that bands like Witchcraft and Spiritual Beggars built their reputations on while its quieter more considered moments possess the atmospheric grandeur that were once the territory of bands like Candlemass and Solitude Aeturnus. David's vocal is magnificent throughout and ranges from husky and gritty to Dio-esque and operatic while managing to comfortably accommodate all stations in-between. The bluesier stoner side of Wizdoom gets an airing on next track "The Half Living Realm", a blues flecked number that builds from humble beginnings into a stomping rocker routinely punctuated by soaring tasteful lead from Andreas Eriksson. "Way of the Lost" follows, an undulating doom ballad/torch song given wings by Linusson's keyboards and taken to another level by an incredible vocal performance from David. The highlight of the album for Desert Psychlist has to be next track "Engrave" its fractured fist pumping groove, underpinned by David's growling bass and Richard Eriksson's thunderous drumming, is just joyously addictive and is further enhanced by some serious shredding from guest guitarist Tommy Johansson (Sabaton/Majestica), and of course it goes without saying how good David's vocals are here. And so we finally arrive at title track "Trolldoom" its bluesy doomic groove, boosted by whooshing Hammond organ and scorching guitar work, effectively bringing to a close what has been a highly entertaining collection of blues flavoured doominosity. 

The beauty of Wizdoom's "Trolldoom" is in the balance of its grit with its polish, the five songs to be found inhabiting this stunning debut EP have an appeal that will sit well with both those who like their doom to have a certain grandiose traditional sheen and those who like their doom a little gnarled and dirty, lets hope there is more to come.
Check it out ...

© 2023 Frazer Jones

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