Oryx – Lamenting a Dead World; Melancholia – Static Church (2021)

More 2021 goodness for you to bludgeon your ears with!

Herein, please find the fourth LP by Oryx (Denver CO) and the fourth EP by Melancholia (Bellingham WA).


OryxLamenting a Dead World (Translation Loss Records, 30 April 2021)


MelancholiaStatic Church (Brutal Panda, 04 June 2021)


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Denver, nestled in the heart of the Rocky Mountains, is known as “Mile High City” — and while that may not seem so extreme compared to some places on earth, the elevation is different enough from most other cities that it can even affect the performance of highly-trained and in-shape professional athletes who visit from elsewhere.

It isn’t something I’d typically spend much time dwelling upon, there’s really not much reason for it, but this just occurred to me while considering how many insanely heavy bands are based in that region. Like Primitive Man and the rest of their family tree; like Cobalt; and like Oryx.

Lamenting a Dead World is forty solid minutes full of thunderous sludgy doom, low and slow, but some people may not realize how much intensity and energy is required to play something so slow and heavy. Especially with the way that closing track “Oblivion” keeps dragging out the riffs throughout its fifteen minute running time.

Not to mention the vocals: all these vitriolic blackened snarls or cavernously-reverbed deathly roars must take an awful lot of oxygen for a place where the air is so thin. Is any of this even relevant to enjoying listening to the album? Absolutely not. But just some food for thought.



Static Church is actually three minutes longer than the release we were just talking about a few moments ago. So why is this one classified as an EP? Is it because it only has four tracks instead of five? No idea. I guess it’s because this northern-Washingtonian duo said so.

They also said they’ll have a debut full-length coming out soon. Possibly sometime this year. What exactly will “full length” mean if it’s following a release where all the songs are more than five minutes long, one of which is a little more than ten, and the last one is nearly twenty-two? I guess we’ll find out. But rather than spending any more time speculating and puzzling over release lengths and specific nomenclatures, let’s focus on the present subject.

The pulsating drums and buzzy, grindy guitars interweave here as they keep on churning together, apparently with some muffled screamed vocals buried in there somewhere. Hauntingly familiar sounds rushing past, hypnotic yet disturbing, like an uncomfortable dream you have no idea how to wake up from because you can’t even tell for sure if you’re really asleep or awake in the first place. Everything compressed and distressed, distorted to the point where it all sounds like lo-fi noise, like an actual “static church.” Whatever that means.



Find the Oryx record to stream or download, or on vinyl right here.
The Melancholia release can be found here on digital or cassette.


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