So I'm back from Hellfest and it's time to review another band from the almighty Napalm Records. The monstrous sludgy sounds of Earth Ship have guided me home, and in many ways their ban name perfectly reflects what the band is all about. There is something extra terrestrial about Earth Ships music, but at the same time its grounded in a very human sense of heavy metal thunder. Listening to the band crunch forward with their devastating bass grooves is far too much fun and fitting reminder of all that they, and the genre as a whole, stand for.
With their trademark crush, Hollowed represents a step forward for the band. Th driving sense of momentum that we hear on songs like Monolith is absolutely monstrous and hints at all that this band is capable of. Sure they aren't especially breaking new ground here, especially not for Napalm Records but they are excellent songwriters and in an increasingly crowded scene it seems ever more obvious that that is all that really counts. What's fascinating though is that Earth Ship don't make their name on hooks or any other traditional pop elements, rather they capture the imagination with bone crushing dedication to all things heavy.
Hollowed is an exercise in refined control. At times they let the chaos seep forward, but only so that you can understand exactly how good they are and let you roar back into place as they re-emphasize the crucial importance of the riff. I think Earth Ship can be so much more though. As their occasional melodic guitar lines show, the men behind Hollowed have an impressive understanding of the instrument and an expansion on their use of contrast and development is only going to bring their world forward.
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