Yatra – Blood of the Night (STB Records, 31 January 2020)
Hello again! If you were here yesterday, you would have noticed we shared the news about the Shadow Frost Music & Arts Festival coming up later this month in central Maryland.
One of the acts scheduled to perform at that event is Yatra, doom-drenched trio from the extreme eastern part of that state, whose second album — just released last week — we will be studying today.
Talking about music in the slow and heavy stoner/doom neighborhood, it really feels like a tired cliché to mention a Black Sabbath influence, but honestly without that classic inspiration where would these genres be today … if they would even exist at all?
Having said that, most of the eight tracks that comprise Blood of the Night are built upon a solid foundation of Vol. 4-style riffs and guitar tones, just slowed a bit and therefore sounding that much heavier and doomier; and as an added treat you’ll find plenty of old-school metal guitar solos sprinkled all over the place. On top of that, to kick things into an even heavier gear, the whole record employs a gruff black/death roaring type of vocals, somewhere between Chuck from Death and Chuck from The Nightmare.
Highlights here include the deathly-slow waltz of “After the Ravens” around the middle of the album; and closing track “Surrender” which (like many of the other songs here) tends to bounce back and forth to a somewhat quicker tempo, and whose main riff has kind of a bluesy-jazzy swing to it (like the main riff in “Electric Funeral”).
The name Yatra comes from the word (यात्रा in Sanskrit) for a religious pilgrimage in the Hindu religion; famously these treks are as much about experiencing the journey as they are about reaching a destination. So my advice for you is to kick back, imbibe whatever you like to help you get into a mellow or introspective mood, throw this record on your turntable (or streaming device, if you must), and enjoy the journey!
* * * * * * *