Brooklyn metal formation TOMBS will be releasing their new studio album “Under Sullen Skies” on November 20 via Season of Mist. The track-list and cover art can be found below. In conjunction with the announcement, the band is now sharing the devastating first single, “Barren,” which can be heard below.
Pre-orders for “Under Sullen Skies” available in the Season of Mist shop at this location.
“Everyone contributes on this record and the door has always been open for others to do so. There has always been this misconception that I’m some sort of tyrant always telling people what to do and play. The fact of the matter is that most of the time I outwork people; that’s just the way I am. No one is ever going to outwork me on any level in any area of my life and I was always coming up with material. Now, I have these maniacs in the band who are equally motivated and there’s a whole new life injected into TOMBS. That’s awesome and I love it. These days we’ll try anything and we actually write stuff and throw it out because it’s not perfect. It’s more like a writing committee, which I really appreciate. It’s not just me writing everything. It’s a big difference from ‘The Grand Annihilation’ which was basically a solo record.” says guitarist Mike Hill.
The album starts with “Bone Collector,” a furious blast of melodic black metal that shifts gears towards an anthemic fist-pumping slog through the goth rock-thrash metal VENN DIAGRAM. “Void Constellation” takes as many cues from Peaceville Three gloom and doom as it does the death metal stomp of OBITUARY and INCANTATION. “Descensum” mines the various well-worn parts of “Ride the Lightning” for influence before blasting the doors open with some startlingly spacious chromatic single-note atonality. As the album progresses, further textures and moods are employed via acoustic instrumentation and keyboards as well as sampled soundscapes all butting heads with furious second wave black metal and sly to nods to death rock heroes SISTERS OF MERCY and FIELDS OF THE NEPHILIM, all of the band’s motivations and interests being dropped into the chameleonic pair of tracks closing the album, “Sombre Ruin” and the appropriately titled “Plague Years.”
After spending his entire adult life navigating the pitfalls and pratfalls of the industry for expressive and creative opportunity, Hill has amassed an impressive legacy, one that “Under Sullen Skies” contributes to admirably and irreverently. Like most, the extreme music underground lifer and veteran is probably justified in approaching the future with very muted optimism, but while the world works at screwing its head back on straight, Hill is going to do what he wants to do as well as he possibly can. Uncertainty may reign at the moment, but Hill and TOMBS are still going to do their thing and will be content to please themselves in the process. If anyone else happens to be along for the ride, then welcome aboard.
“‘Under Sullen Skies’ is a dark and introspective album,” he asserts. “It’s not a happy record that anyone is going to use to get pumped up on a Friday night. We wanted to pull out the stops, go full-on and make a nice body of work. I could care less if anyone likes the band or not because I’ve been through so many ups and downs with this thing that I don’t give a fuck if people enjoy the music. I know I like it, I know the guys in the band like it and we’re just rocking and rolling. This record and the EP came out about as close as I could imagine to what I have in my brain about how this band should sound. The whole trajectory of the band has had each record never quite hitting, but ‘Monarchy of Shadows’ and ‘Under Sullen Skies’ have both really come out how I envisioned the songs to be.”
The cover artwork for “Under Sullen Skies” was created by Valnoir and can be found below, together with the track-list, which can be seen below:
1. Bone Furnace
2. Void Constellation
4. The Hunger
5. Secrets Of The Black Sun
7. We Move Like Phantoms
9. Lex Talionis
10. Angel Of Darkness
11. Sombre Ruin
12. Plague Years
- Mike Hill / Guitars, vocals, electronics, synth
- Matt Medeiros / Guitars
- Drew Murphy / Bass, vocals
- Justin Spaeth / Drums, guitars, electronics, synth