KING GOBLIN - Cryptozoology
March 25, 2016, a year ago
This Japanese weird-doom band gets points right off the bat for naming their 2007 debut Goblin King. Confuse 'em right outta the gates was their plan, and now, nine years later on their second album, things are just as blurry: opening song proper “King Of The Flies” is doom filtered through '70s prog and psych, the band managing to play a Grief sludge riff and a '70s solo AT THE SAME TIME. And I think I'm sold, or maybe I'm just slightly annoyed, as this is a pretty grating and bewildering sound. “Prophet” continues the '70s prog leanings in a big way, and, sure, I'm sold. The clean guitar on “Garadama” is pretty cool, and the band's odd mixture of sounds are starting to gel together pretty good by this point in the album (and by that, I mean the listener's ears are finally starting to accept what is happening); as the album goes on, much of the time the only thing extreme about this are the vocals, which are just barked and screamed in a relatively uninteresting fashion; I wonder what clean vocals over this sort of amped-up retro rock would sound like?
The tripped-out cover of “Mississippi Queen” is, well... man, I think I gotta be stoned to enjoy this thing. As is, it's leaning just a feather this side of “too quirky” for me to imagine going back to it for repeat listens, but I gotta give at least one horn up to the band's relentless sense of experimentation. Plus, you stick this on and it's pretty apparent pretty fast who it is, an impressive quality in extreme metal... if that's even what this confounding, perplexing, sort of frustrating, and kinda fun album even is.