Lovers Lane
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The Gates Of Slumber preview

| December 3, 2008

The Gates Of Slumber
Metal Shaker, Chicago
Friday, December 5, 2008


Apparently, we can’t deal with high expectations at Illinois Entertainer, because that’s exactly what we had for The Gates Of Slumber’s newest album, Conqueror, and either it failed us or we failed it.

Somehow, someway, we didn’t hear the record until more than a month after its May 27th release, and by that time the Indianapolis band (which formed in the late ’90s) was being hailed as the new Sabbath. Or at least the new Saint Vitus. Maybe we would have agreed had we heard it May 28th instead of June 28th. Who knows? But we didn’t, and we don’t. Instead we think it’s sorta boring and don’t really understand the big deal.

And it is a big deal, buddy boy. The accolades piled on Conqueror (Profound Lore) immediately after its release in May were nothing compared to those it’s receiving as the year-end lists start emerging. In its Top 40 Of 08, Decibel (the closest a heavy metal magazine comes to highbrow) ranked the album No. 5, which beat out big-time buzz records like Gojira’s The Way Of All Flesh, big-time comeback records like Testament’s The Formation Of Damnation, big-time trendy records like Witch’s Paralyzed, and, well, every fucking thing else except Opeth, Genghis Tron, Nachtmystium, and Torche.

We want to like this album, O.K.? Fuzzy, simplistic doom metal with lots of solos and lyrics based on Robert E. Howard characters like Kull and Conan? A barbarian-lookin’ fella on the front cover holding a bloody blade in one hand and a severed head in the other while a naked lady leans against his leg? That’s our shit! Plus Slumber runs in the same circle as fantastic bands like Bible Of The Devil and Slough Feg, plus the album was recorded by Sanford Parker, who, among other fine material this year, produced both the Lair Of The Minotaur and Nachtmystium records.

I guess you can already count us out for the next Gates Of Slumber disc, too. In Decibel frontman/guitarist Karl Simon says the demos for the upcoming album “blow Conqueror away.” “I think this next record is gonna be our Stained Class.” Ah jeez.

Demiricous, The Horde, and The Muzzler open.

— Trevor Fisher

Click here to download The Gates Of Slumber’s “Ice Worm.”

Category: Stage Buzz, Weekly

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