Obed Marsh - Dunwich review

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Band: Obed Marsh
Album: Dunwich
Release date: January 2019

01. Yog Sothoth: Obsidian Stars Will Fall
02. Lavinia: The Lights That Lay Before My Eyes
03. Lavinia: Wretched Duo
04. Lavinia: Hieronymus
05. Wilbur: Necronomicon
06. Wilbur: Wreathed In Ivy
07. Wilbur: Verdance VII
08. Hieronymus: Matricidal Lineage
09. Hieronymus: The Dunwich Horror
10. Hieronymus: Pealed From Mortal Sinew

Imagine still reviewing 2018 albums. This review was made by 2019 gang.

Lovecraftian metal seems all the rage, especially in the last 5 years, when we've had stuff like Sulphur Aeon and The Great Old Ones get so much attention. What did get a little less attention was Obed Marsh's debut from three years ago, Innsmouth, which was a big, weird doom record. Hailing from Australia (which supposedly exists), the duo comprises Drew James Griffiths of Ur Draugr fame and Sam Ford of no fame yet. Hopefully things will change and the horrific slab of eldritch horror that is Dunwich will betide them some recognition.

Dunwich is based on Lovecraft's short story The Dunwich Horror (which you can read here), with the record being structurally divided into three parts, each relating to a key character in said story and each ending with a short ambient piece (as well as the record as a whole beginning with an unrelated ambient piece). But that's not what you'll remember most after listening to this. What you'll remember would be the horrifying vocals. I could try to describe them as ghoulish or Nazgulish or eldritch or whatever, but nothing can actually set up a proper mental image... or proper mental sound, rather, of what they're like until you do listen to them. What they do manage to achieve is make the album sound nonhuman in a way that few extreme metal albums have managed to do.

But the vocals don't take that much of the run time, especially considering how many of the tracks are just mood-setting pieces, but most of the longer tracks focus more on building atmosphere, much more so than the debut. That is where the doom part in the whole mix is really strong. Extremely angular, dissonant, slightly sorrowful and with a slightly better production than the previous album, the doom on Dunwich perfectly conveys the otherworldly evil horror that is Lovecraft's work (and his cat's name). Clocking in at nearly an hour, there are few moments where the album ever feels like it drags too much, but other than extremely solid.

There's still untapped potential for Obed Marsh, but they've already shown willingness to evolve with just two albums. The wave of Lovecraftian metal is ever growing and it's bound to keep going and give us more greats for a while.


Written on 19.01.2019 by My opinion is objective, sorry if you don't agree, but you're wrong.


Comments: 1   Visited by: 3 users
26.07.2020 - 05:54
Really the vocals are so fuckign good. I also like the very raw approach. Ironically it kind of feels more like The Colour Out Of Space than the more whacky Dunwich Horror to me. Second track in particular is phenomenal and I keep coming back to this.

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