In the wake of much loved doomy stoner metal lords Hang the Bastard splitting up, come Urne, a 3-piece tempo hopping hard rock outfit to bring us a taste of what we crave so much since HTB
dis-banded. And that’s where the comparisons end. This is a new band with new material and it’s really, really great!
Opening track ‘Dust Atlas’ really sets the scene for this album straight away with a doom-heavy riff fused perfectly with a riff that would be at home on a thrash record, and almost ends up in death metal territory, before Joe Nally’s vocals kick in. You’d be forgiven for thinking that this was a throwback to 2004’s metalcore scene when the chorus vocals kick in but it soon takes a turn with a really edgy melody which is just the start of tons of things on this EP that are just refreshing and definitely make it stand out among others. This is emphasised in a bass and drum break middle-8 which has a splattering of delay-covered guitar over the top.
3-piece bands seem to be the preferred order of the day at the moment over the traditional 5-piece bands who have paved the way in all genres since the new-wave of British heavy metal in the late 70’s. At the outset it’s fairly bewildering to consider how they could create such a thick sound, especially underneath solos, when compared to their more seasoned peers, but that’s another great thing Urne have managed to achieve on this record - the inventive use of limited instruments and members to create something that’s non-comparable to the traditional methods and it’s brilliant to hear. On ‘The Lady and The Devil’ in compensating for the lack of rhythm guitar, the drums and bass combine to create a much more decorated and interesting backdrop for the solo to stand in front of.
The titular track from the EP ‘The Mountain of Gold’ features a riff so heavy you just have to grin – it’s not the lowest or slowest of heavy riffs but it’s brilliantly used and just casually sits behind the vocals throughout the verse. The vocals in the chorus have a psychedelic feel to them thanks to a healthy dose of echo which again helps set this record apart - these tracks may be filled with elements of thrash and doom but it’s all packaged in a unique way.
Clocking in at over 20 minutes in just 4 tracks, this may be an EP but there is almost as much on display here as there is in some full albums and this is all encapsulated in the last and longest track on the EP – slow riffs, fast riffs, delayed solo’s, highly decorated basslines, growling and singing all tied together excellently by Rich Wiltshire’s drumming. With Sylosis frontman Josh Middleton on production duties, it’s understandable how they’ve managed to create such a high quality sounding record and, whilst it may contribute towards how this EP is perceived sonically, the level of maturity and general fucking awesomeness on display here is in abundance throughout these tracks and is directly attributable to the song writing and performance.
There are thousands of bands I could compare Urne to on this record, many of which are clearly a direct influence on the music, but that would be doing these guys a massive disservice. I would be
surprised if they haven’t taken a direct influence from a multitude of different bands from various genres over the years but the music these guys are making really is its own entity, a unique
combination of various notable styles all woven together in a way that creates something that sounds really different and refreshing. It’s an exciting prospect to see how they take this forward and
build on it on the next record.
The Lady and the Devil
Mountain of Gold
The March Towards the Sun (feat. Josh Middleton)
Joe Nally – vocals / bass
Angus Neyra – Guitar
Rich Wiltshire – Drums
You can find them at: