Alunah – Violet Hour

Alunah – Violet Hour
Heavy Psych Sounds
Release Date: 11/10/2019
Running Time: 41:35
Review by Paul Monkhouse
8/10

Midlands four-piece Alunah show that, without doubt, you can take something primal and brutal but turn it into a thing of beauty. Their 60’s tinged doom metal follows in the footsteps of pioneers Black Sabbath but is, if anything, more unnerving than the Legends ever released and, with Siân Greenaway fronting the band, have a vocalist who can really seduce the listener. ‘Trapped & Bound’ opens with dense riffs and heavy as thunder drums before enchanting vocals come in sounding like an angry Grace Slick and finally Dean Ashton kicks in with a tasty, funked up guitar solo. ‘Dance of Deceit’ also makes a huge impression, driving and forceful, it doesn’t just bluster and crush but does something more subtle and deadly too.

Having the air of something that could have been penned at the tail end of the days of ‘flower power’, ‘Hunt’ is a gorgeous and seductive slice of heavy and twisted psychedelia. Hypnotic and strangely futuristic, it radiates a sense of edgy wonder as Greenaway comes across as a primal and earthy force.  The singer comes to the fore again as she mesmerises over the cascading stoner fretwork of the aptly titled ‘Hypnotised’, the track swirling and pulsating to a shuddering finish. The album’s title track turns more towards a menacing blues shuffle with drummer Jake Mason and Daniel Burchmore on bass really turning up the heat, their playing hitting a solid groove and they then truly launch into the galloping riff of ‘Unholy Disease’. One of the most epic tracks on the release, this is a full-blooded assault on the senses as the huge vocals and guitar solo lift the song out into the stratosphere.

Not to be outdone or anti-climactic, ‘Velvet’ blends a riff almost plucked from Sabbath’s ‘Iron Man’ with the mystical and Far Eastern vibe of Zeppelin’s ‘Kashmir’ to devastating effect but the band manage to top even this with closer ‘Lake of Fire’. Opening with some cool keys playing, the track is a real head trip, yet more exquisite vocals grow and swell until they’re the size to fill a cathedral. The huge scale and ambition of Alunah is encapsulated in this final track but, in truth, the whole album is a one titanic magic carpet ride from start to finish. The aural equivalent of Hansel and Gretel’s forest, “Violet Hour” is certainly something to get yourself lost in.

TRACKLISTING:
01. Trapped & Bound
02. Dance Of Deceit
03. Hunt
04. Hypnotised
05. Violet Hour
06. Unholy Disease
07. Velvet
08. Lake Of Fire

LINE-UP
Siân Greenaway – Vocals
Daniel Burchmore – Bass
Jake Mason – Drums
Dean Ashton – Guitar

LINKS:
https://www.facebook.com/alunah.doom/
https://twitter.com/alunah_doom
https://www.instagram.com/alunahband/
https://alunah.bandcamp.com/

Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of Paul Monkhouse 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.