Ggu:ll – Dwaling - 2-LP
Dutch drone/doom slingers Ggu:ll (good luck pronouncing that one) have dropped their debut album, Dwaling, and they’ve ‘dropped’ it in the sense that one would drop a cinderblock onto an unsuspecting passer by eight stories below you.
Opening with ‘Hoon’, the band set the tempo agonisingly slow – a wall of grating feedback is slowly crushed on the weight of deliberate, restrained chords and steady drums. It’s quite ‘quiet’ compared to other doom bands, who seem to want to turn everything up to 11 all the time, but this subtlety allows you to appreciate the layering and atmospherics on offer. Crowed, ragged vocals cut through the drudging pace, and there’s an air of lightless hopelessness surrounding the album that lingers like fog.
‘Dwaling (Gehirn und Abgrund)’ jams in with echoing flashes of chords, before gaining momentum through a slow, sludgy crawl, bombastic doomy chords and slow-mo drum fills carried onwards by brooding bass and the occasional snatch of layered, rabid vocals. ‘Het smerige kleed van de ziel’ begins with a thumping, tribal drum pattern, opening up into grinding chords and warbling, spectral clean vocals. ‘Waan’ builds its’ threat steadily, like a slower Amenra, scraping guitars and massive chords, crashing waves of bleakness breaking upon your trapped form.
‘Het masker vande wereldt afgetrocken’ clangs in, guitars jarring, piercing the densely layered atmosphere, a dark mire suffused by more ‘melodic’ notes that mock the concept of melody, using every inch of space, ending in a spasmodic mid-paced drive. Closer ‘March 28 1941, Drowning’ is arguably the slowest, most doomy of all, slowly unravelling with wretched vocals and a cinematic, agonisingly slow rolling groove that ends in watery noise. ‘Drowning’ indeed.
Confidently executed and unflinchingly dark, Ggu:ll have conjured a bleak yet listenable album, as rewarding in the background as it is in the fore. Intricate layering, deliberate pacing and barely restrained rage mean that, although some of these songs have been around in one form or another for years, this may be the best they’ve sounded.
- Heavy printed innersleeves.
- 180g white virgin vinyl (lim. 200)
- Etched Side D.