In the rapidly proliferating world of stoner/droner/doom metal, it has become increasingly more difficult to say something original and relevant.
While most anyone with a taste for the sludgy side of things appreciates any band doing something of quality (regardless of innovation or lack there of) in this realm, sometimes simplicity is necessary for the sake of survival. For the sake of reinvention.
Miami's Holly Hunt has taken the fundamental essentials of doom -- visceral, lumbering guitar riffs and heavy-handed drumming -- and crafted a sound that is as bludgeoning as it is satisfying.
Where a group like Swans takes repetition and volume, using it as an assault, a deliberate attack on the senses, Holly Hunt's use of those two sonic elements welcomes the banging of heads, the closing of eyes, and a willingness to go where the riffs take you.
The duo, comprised of former Floor drummer Beatriz Monteavero on drums and Gavin Perry on guitar (delivered through a veritable wall of vintage Hiwatt amplifiers) has just released its debut full-length album, Year One, via Other Electricities and Roofless Records.
Holly Hunt enlisted friend and Torche bassist, Jonathan Nuñez, to engineer the album. "He was really helpful, his bedside manner is amazing. He never seemed to want to overstep his relationship as engineer. At the same time, he was encouraging and really supportive with ideas. So it was great" Perry says of the recording process.
For anyone that has witnessed a Holly Hunt show, it should come as no surprise that recording the band was no easy task. This metal twosome utilizes sheer volume in a way that brings its primal riffs and rhythms to life, quaking entire buildings (including the internal organs of its occupants) with every note.
"I mean, I think it's a challenge for us to capture what that energy is playing live," Perry says. "I don't know that you can actually really attain that? Jonathan did a really good job in making a very big sound, particularly on the guitar tracks.
"It sounds, to me, like a chorus of guitars. And that sort of emulates, maybe, what would actually be happening if our sound wasn't blowing out your eardrums. I'm not really sure it's possible to get that level of impact in a recorded scenario.
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"There is something special to be actually at the show, between the sweat, and electrons and all of the rest of that -- you know? How do you get that on a recording?"
Buy a double 150g vinyl or digital download of Year One from other-electricities.com.
Holly Hunt's Year One Album-Release Show. With Torche, Post Teens, and The Tunnel. Friday, December 14. Churchill's Pub, 5501 NE Second Ave., Miami. The show starts at 9 p.m. and cover costs $10. Call 305-757-1807 or visit churchillspub.com.