10,000 Years – III

10,000 Years – III
Interstellar Smoke Records
Release Date: 24.06.22
Running Time: 47:07
Review by Dark Juan

Guess who’s back? Back again? Dark Juan’s back, tell your friends…

Good afternoon, greetings and salutations, earthlings of all known genders. I, Dark Juan, have returned to share with you all some wisdom and nonsense. Not necessarily in that order. You know my rabid writings now. It’s 95% nonsense and 5% wisdom although these quantities vary according to how pissed or fatigued I am. I am seated in Dark Juan Terrace, wearing my Second Invocation Robes (Summer Weight) and wondering just why French Bulldogs are cursed with an arse that makes my home smell like a thousand Chennai shithouses. Not even incense, threats of death or the promise of a cork, personally applied, up said canine arse will make it stop. I have had to open the window and now I daresay the neighbourhood smells like the gutters of a Belo Horizonte favela on a ridiculously hot day.

I daren’t show my face outside. The poor people working on the house over the road are wrinkling their noses at the infernal stench and they are in the open air! So, because of abject shame and considerable embarrassment I have clamped my cans to my poor, abused ears, shoved wads of Olbas Oil infused toilet roll up each nostril and have given my attention to Swedish sci-fi stoner metalheads 10,000 Years and their imaginatively titled new platter, “III”, being the third part of an epic musical sci-fi trilogy of albums. Although their debut was called “II”. I am confused. Today, this is not a hard thing to do.

The opening offering on this record is entitled “Cult Axe” and is a suitably thunderous affair and a fine soundtrack to the explosive demolition of large buildings. It is also rather faster than I was anticipating (I read stoner in the blurb and was expecting mogadon-sloooooooooooow grooves) and instead offers the listener a surprisingly speedy, almost thrash metal vibe, especially with the vocals of (also bassist) Alex Risberg having a decidedly punky edge to them. An impressive opener that jolted your correspondent out of his indolence and into surprised attention. The second and third tracks, “Megafauna” and “Deserts Of Madness” step off the gas somewhat but remain rather rapid by stoner metal terms before 10,000 Years totally change gear with “The Secret Of Water”, being a languid, liquid instrumental piece, all gentle swirling guitars, fluid bottom end and a snare drum sound to kill for. Regular perusers of the shit I write will know that I deeply appreciate a well-honed snare sound, because most drummers (or possibly their producers) favour a snare drum sound not unlike whacking a taut, wet tea towel with a particularly flaccid dead trout. How many of you were expecting me to say “penis” then?

“The Green King Rises” soon puts to rest any thought of the band mellowing for the rest of the album though, as they crank up the fuzz and deliver a mountainous, monumental slice of stoner grooviness before they hit the amphetamine again and race through “Il Cattivo”. This means “The Bad” or “The Evil” in Italian and the vocals remind one greatly of Slayer’s Tom Araya. Which is a sentence I never thought I would hear myself say with regards to a stoner metal band, even if they seem to be pioneers of speed stoner. The obligatory half speed break, with mental tube screamer guitar solo and planet-sized riffs beloved of stoner bands makes a welcome appearance before the crafty bastards slow it down to quarter speed. Special mention must go out to the super fuzzy bass guitar at this point as it errs perilously close to the brown frequency…

Production wise, apart from slightly flat floor toms, this record properly hits the stoner spot. A sound that is more dense than the chav population of Doncaster and Worksop combined tips the heaviness quotient towards “forming a new geological fault in Scandinavia” and remarkably remains eminently listenable and maintains clarity throughout, even when these mighty Swedes pick up their metaphorical skirts and give their instruments a damned good thrashing.

Things take a decidedly strange bent halfway through “Escape From Earth” with a small section apparently channelling Aunty Bob Smith and The Cure before morphing into a decidedly prog aesthetic with the guitar sound on the solo courtesy of the most aptly named guitarist in existence, Erik Palm, yet throughout, planet-fracturing heaviness is maintained. “To Suns Beyond” (the album closer) starts with more languid British pop-goth channelling with the echo and reverb infused guitar before plastering the unsuspecting (actually, I wasn’t. I’ve got the measure of 10,000 Years and their use of the loud-quiet-fucking LOUD dynamic now) listener back against the door he just came into the room from, especially on this extended instrumental track. One (if you’re a sad old goff like me) could easily imagine wispy, consumptive goth girls in taffeta and lace and extremely pointed footwear waving their hands around in front of their faces in a dreamy fashion during the quieter sections…

One thing I haven’t mentioned about 10,000 Years that I really should bring your attention to is the epic quality of their compositions. There is a grandiosity around their arrangements and playing that elevates them above the drug-obsessed stoner masses. Epic stoner-thrash-prog. Now there’s a new genre to conjure with if there ever was one…

The Patented Dark Juan Blood Splat Rating System (Det patenterade Dark Juan-systemet för blodstänk) awards 10,000 Years 10/10 for a superb album, chock full of surprises and originality from a genre that normally prizes the power of the riff above all else. I don’t have a clue what’s going on today. I have delivered a review that could almost qualify as professional. This is unheard of. And it is under a thousand words long which is entirely not appropriate for my style. To remedy this travesty, I’m going to use some rude, crude words as there also has been a distinct lack of cursing and swearing today.

Girl’s pants. 

Girl’s DIRTY pants.

Now we have over a thousand words. I can rest easy. Until next time, farewell. May ye gang faur and fare waur.

01. Cult Axe
02. Megafauna
03. Desert Of Madness
04. The Secret Of Water
05. The Green King Rises
06. Il Cattivo
07. Escape From Earth
08. To Suns Beyond

Erik Palm – Guitars
Alex Risberg – Bass/vocals
Espen Karlsen – Drums

LINKS: (234. Sorry, sometimes I cannot help myself. I’m giggling like an idiot… must be sleep deprivation.)

Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of ‘Dark Juan’ and Ever Metal. It is strictly forbidden to copy any part of this review, unless you have the strict permission of both parties. Failure to adhere to this will be treated as plagiarism and will be reported to the relevant authorities.

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