We’re receiving really great gratifications from the Iberian Peninsula in this beginning of the year. First the great album by Sinistro, now this little masterpiece by Grajo. Both the two albums draw extensively from the slow and heavy elements of doom, and both groups see the presence of a beautiful female voices. Will it be just a coincidence?
Grajo is a relatively new psychedelic doom band from Andalusia, in Spain, which entered the scene a couple of years ago with an interesting and self-titled EP, and that now released their debut full-lenght album, named SLOWGOD II.
From a musical point of view, the band plays a doomish-version of stoner rock that manages to move with great ease between songs with dominated by psychedelic and trippy sounds, and tracks characterized by a more abrasive approach and with elements from sludge metal. But, at the end, the most important feature of the music from Grajo is the capacity to build up breathtaking atmospheres and to insert so many interesting and varied elements in their songs that at the end the experience of listening to the album becomes a very pleasant journey with many stages. It’s easy to recognized the great effort that these guys from Córdoba have put into the realization of this work: the songs are never imprecise or approximate, and the band really managed to balance the multiple influences from which they draw, without ever losing the direction they have given to their music.
The LP consists of 6 tracks, all of them interesting and deep, with a couple of peaks which elevate the album among the best things we heard so far in 2018. I’ve been particularly impressed by Malstrøm, the epic sludge song which close the album and that features 8 minutes of pure atmospheric beauty.
Comparing SLOWGOD II with the previous works that were released in the recent pastby the band (we have a handful of publications like EPs, singles and split albums) it’s possible to recognize the will from Grajo to make their music a little more accessible and, as such, potentially hitting a wider audience. The debut LP however shows that this has been achieved without compromises in quality and inspiration.
It is not easy to predict if this interesting band from Spain succeed in reaching the level of the masters of their genre, but certainly the path they have taken seems to be the right one.
SLOWGOD II was released on January 15, 2018 and the LP is availalbe for streaming and purchase (5€) on bandcamp.