Review : YOB - The Great Cessatio
PitchforkInfinite shades of black exist even within metal subgenres. "Doom metal," for example, has diversified so much that the term doesn't mean much beyond down-tuned guitars and slow tempos. The tree from which all doom (and metal in general) springs is Black Sabbath. Sabbath lead to the bluesy stylings of "stoner doom" of Sleep and Electric Wizard. The doom tree also has stranger branches-- "death doom" (death metal + doom metal) hybrids like Coffins and Hooded Menace; "sludge doom" like Eyehategod and Sourvein from the American South; the astral density of the UK's Esoteric; grandfather clock bongs a thousand years wide from their compatriots Moss.
Oregon's YOB have carved out a niche of "cosmic doom," which is a descriptor, not a subgenre. Few bands do what YOB do-- marry Black Sabbath's heavy and psychedelic sides. Sabbath did both equally well. But when they wheeled out acoustic guitars and bongo drums, they were just taking a break. YOB keep the pressure up, driving riffs into subterranean depths, yet sending melodies spiraling skyward. 2005's The Unreal Never Lived perfected such duality. It found the intersection among roaring guitars, yoga class, black light dreams, and white light ecstasy. Black Sabbath with Dio as singer changed their name to Heaven and Hell for legal reasons. Had they followed through sonically, YOB might have resulted....full text
StonerrockYOB - The Great Cessation
Review by John Pegoraro (StonerRock.com)
Profound Lore Records
Release date: July 14, 2009
Playing in a band isn't supposed to be pretty or fair, but what happened to Middian was about as dogshit awful as it gets. Mike Scheidt's post-YOB project had every indication of surpassing YOB's already awe-inspiring output (and this, mind you, I base on “Dreamless Eye” alone), and then some do-nothing, go-nowhere band from – well, who the fuck cares, really? - hits them with a cease and desist order due to a trademarked name. If you can barely break even on tour, how are you going to pay for legal fees? The short answer is “You can't,” so Middian hung it up.
That would have been a completely disastrous turn of events had Scheidt not resurrected YOB. And, judging by the anguished roar that he lets loose at two minutes and 23 seconds into lead track “Burning the Altar,” he also channeled the rage and pent-up aggression of the Middian experience into The Great Cessation. Doom – be it traditional, crust, funeral, psychedelic, or whatever other sub-sub-genre's out there - is meant to be dour and slow, but here it's also furious. The riffs, the vocals, the deliberate, pummeling rhythm (courtesy of YOB alumni Travis Foster on drums and new bassist Aaron Reiseberg) – the song's a clenched fist. It seethes from start to finish, and as a statement of intent for The Great Cessation, you can't get any better....full text
PopmattersThe first of Buddhism’s Four Noble Truths is, “All life is suffering.” Considering what he’s gone through over the past couple years, Mike Scheidt knows a thing or two about that. Following the break-up of Oregon doom metal mainstays YOB in 2005, the guitarist/vocalist/songwriter formed a new trio by the name of Middian, 2007’s debut album Age Eternal focusing on a more immediate, aggressive form of doom than his more swing-oriented, philosophically-themed previous band. All was well and good, the album got a lot of positive press, but later that year Scheidt and his bandmates were hit with a lawsuit by a defunct band by the name of Midian. Although the single additional letter “d” seemed save enough, the overtly litigious Wisconsinites thought otherwise, dragging the friendly, well-meaning West Coasters into a prolonged legal battle that cost Scheidt loads of money, a record deal, the band name, a damn fine album (which is now out of print as a result of the lawsuit), and in the end, his band, drummer Scott Headrick relocating, bassist Will Lindsay joining fellow Oregonians Wolves in the Throne Room....full text
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