11/10/09 || Khlysty
In doom, there’s slow, slower, slowest. And then, there’s Khanate – a supergroup of sorts, featuring Steven O’Malley, James Plotkin, Alan Dubin and Tim Wyskida – who decided that slow is not enough, so they made music out of your worst nightmares. Slow? Fucking slow????!!! I tell you, there’s no slow –or low- even approaching Khanate’s sound. Funnily, some fucktards described them as an “art metal” band, if you can ever believe that…
10. Guitar downtuned to Hell and more, drums not plodding but OOZING from the whole mess, bass like a black hole of sound, effects that will keep you awake for whole nights and, on top of that, a guy screaming, screeching, wailing and whispering things that no human has any right of even thinking. Doom metal? Nah, that’s for pussies. I’m not even sure if you can call this… THING, music.
10. So clear and crisp, that if you play it a little bit louder, the music will leap out of the speakers and start killing innocent bystanders.
10. O’Malley doesn’t actually play his instrument. Most of the time he seems like trying to control feedback. When the “riffs” –what riffs?- come, they sound elemental, like thunder, or like a body connecting with an unmovable object: death is imminent…
9. Dubin is the embodiment of expressionism in the vocal department. Besides having a voice with a timbre not unlike Bon Scott’s –but with a serious psychotic twist-, his presence in the record is the ingredient that elevates the whole thing from great to total psychosis, turning into, well, something genre-defining.
10. Plotkin grabs thin air and turns it into the most sluggish, tar-covered low-end sound by which your ears have ever been molested.
9. Besides being imperative to kick him from time to time, so as to stay awake, Wyskida, when playing, hits his drums with a ferocity never heard before in a doom record. Also, nice cymbal work that enhances the slaughter of the music.
8. “Under a bed, a leg and a saw, red teeth gnaw”. “Peel… Now… Feel. I wear a human shield, shhhh… shhhh”. “Whaaaaaaaaaargh! Nhyaaaaaaaoooooorg!”. “I want you to choke”… You catch the drift, huh?
8. O’Malley, besides being an great guitarist, he’s also a very good visual artist and it shows: inexplicable, oppressive and vague, the cover art goes perfectly with what is contained within.
7. Also O’Malley’s creation, Brody-an in idea and execution, a simple font with overlapping letters. Cool.
8. Lyrics, expansion of the cover art theme, a bizarre image, it’s ok.
Overall and ending rant
The first time I listened to this record I was shocked: never had a band in any genre made such a statement of intent in a first record. Khanate is not just slow-and-low; it’s evil. It will hurt you in ways unthinkable and most people will find it unlistenable. But, if you give it time and psychosis, you’ll be one happy crazy guy, because this is what this music is like: the soundtrack of a mind totally and irrevocably gone. This is the real thing…
- Released: 2001
- Label: Southern Lord
- Website: www.ideologic.org and www.plotkinworks.com
- Alan Dubin: vocals
- James Plotkin: bass, synthesizers
- Tim Wyskida: drums
- Stephen O’ Malley: guitar
- 01. Pieces of quiet
- 02. Skincoat
- 03. Torching Koroviev
- 04. Under rotting sky
- 05. No joy