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Unsigned and Unholy: Arakk, Acid Priest, Meridian Sun

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Danish atmospheric doom outfit Arakk take a while to get things going — each of the two tracks on their latest album is over 20 minutes long, plus slow builds come with the territory in this genre — but boy do they make the payoff worth it. The whole ride is enjoyable, really; the epic builds full of washes of melancholy would stand up just fine on their own (and many bands have made a career of just those), but here they also serve to further the greater experience.

New Jersey stoner punksters Acid Priest pedal a furious brew of outsize fuzzed out riffs, psychedelic-infused leads and raw punk energy. Press play on their latest EP Drop Out for the Sabbathian grooves, but stick around for the ferocity of a basement punk rock show where you and everyone you know leaves soaked in beer, whiskey and sweat.

A fan of Meridian Sun, posting on their Bandcamp page, describes the London band as “Prog tinted heavy sludginess coated in superb clean vocal melodies,” and that more or less nails it! Their new EP The Curse consists of a single 22-minute song, and it’s a doozy: you’ll wonder why the above fan made any mention of prog anything until… oh, there it is! I usually take exception to the one-track-as-EP thing in concept, but here it totally works on account of the changes throughout, all anchored by central musical themes.

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