Conan + Monolord + Elder Druid
Conan & Monolord will crush Ireland in May 2018 when they come to Voodoo Lounge, Dublin on the 15th and Voodoo, Belfast the following night. Tickets on sale 17th January 2018 @ 10am.
The UK group “Conan” first started in 2006. The year 2007 brought with them the Battle in the Swamp EP, but it was 2010’s Horseback BattleHammer EP that first caught the attention of the international underground. Songs like “Satsumo” and “Krull” showed that just because the band sounded big didn’t mean they couldn’t also write a song, and when their debut long-player, Monnos, followed in 2012 preceded by a 2011 split with Slomatics, the response was duly huge.
A slot at the Netherlands’ prestigious Roadburn festival in 2012 resulted in 2013’s Mount Wrath live album. Touring Europe, they shared the stage with Sleep in Norway and in 2013, Conan featured at Desertfest in London, playing to Camden’s famed Underworld club alongside Chicago’s Bongripper, with whom they also released a split EP, Conan’s contribution coming in the form of the sprawling, droned-out “Beheaded,” their longest song to date at over 17 minutes.
The band toured across the UK and Europe to support Monnos, including at the 2013 Damnation Festival, Napalm Records signed Conan for the release of their second album. Jon and Chris constructed Skyhammer Studio, where they would create 2014’s Blood Eagle for Napalm as both Conan’s and the studio’s reputation continued to grow.
Conan set forth a full European tour for Spring 2014, including a return to Roadburn and appearances at Doom Over Leipzig, Dronenburg Festival, Temples Festival, the St. Helena Doom Fest and France’s famed Hellfest plus several other outings including Amplifest in Porto, Desertfest in Antwerp and a full Australia tour.
2015 saw them venture to Europe and (for the first time) the USA, performing for the first time at the famous Maryland DeathFest in Baltimore, Maryland. Several tours followed before they headed to the studio once more and recorded what was to become their next full length Revengeance, released early 2016.
2016 saw the band once more venture to the USA for a month long tour, followed by trips to Australia, New Zealand and Europe.
DISCOGRAPHY: 2007 – Battle In The Swamp EP (self released)
2010 – Horseback Battle Hammer EP (Throne Records / Aurora Borealis Records / Head of Crom Records / Napalm Records / Black Bow Records )
2011 – Conan vs Slomatics split 12” (Burning World Records / Black Bow Records)
2012 – Monnos LP (Burning World Records)
2012 – Mount Wrath: Live At Roadburn 2012 (Burning World Records)
2013 – Conan / Bongripper Split 12 inch (Holy Roar Records / Black Bow Records)
2014 – Blood Eagle LP (Napalm Records)
2015 – Live at Bannermans (Black Bow Records)
2016 – Revengeance (Napalm Records)
Gothenburg, Sweden trio Monolord is a rare breed: A band both encompassing and transcending genre; a vortex of heavy rock density that consumes all others. Their thunderous, tuneful heft has built a rabid international fanbase in short order since their 2014 debut. But Rust, the band’s third full length, truly exemplifies why some refer to them as the Nirvana of doom.
Monolord’s enveloping, syrupy sludge is a vibe, it’s a state of mind. Not riffs for riffs sake, but a collective buzzing, rattling and rumbling that’s more total environment than collection of songs. Together, guitarist/vocalist Thomas Jäger, drummer Esben Willems and bassist Mika Häkki create a massive, dynamic sound with ultra-low frequencies serving as its fourth member.
“We’ve always been inspired by great band musicians — as opposed to technical solo peacocks,” Willems says. “Because that force of a band really playing together as one single unit is incomparable. At its best, it’s just unstoppable.” And, Monolord is truly unstoppable, on record and on stage. “A heavy groove that contains both bombastic overkill and a lot of dynamics is what we always aim for in Monolord; in playing, in song writing and arranging, in recording,” Willems says.
Album opener “Where Death Meets the Sea” perfectly exemplifies their mastery of dynamics and hooks with a driving, infectious buzzsaw riff that lesser bands would ride off into the sunset, but Monolord uses subtly to spur the song’s skull rattling rhythmic core ever onward. Jäger’s watery vocals glide over ominously building verses that erupt with the song’s insistent refrain. Being such a tight rhythmic unit, it sounds almost like an early ZZ Top record played at half speed. “Dear Lucifer” squeals and hums with slow deliberation as Willems summons Dale Crover pummel with chasm like low-tuned toms and syncopated cymbal crashes. The album’s title track is also its centerpiece, opening with a dramatic, shimmering Hammond organ intro as Jäger sings, “you are the reason that I lied/ You are the reason that I cried/ Please don’t wait until tomorrow/ There’s only pain, hate, grief and sorrow.” Suddenly, the band kicks in with a bellowing line downtuned to B that nosedives down the guitar neck as the drums hammer down for the kill. Elsewhere, tastefully understated guitar harmonies elevate the behemoth churn of “Wormland” and apocalyptic album closer “At Niceae” simmers in a slow build of rumbling guitars and rolling drum triplets.
Monolord formed in 2013, quickly recording their 2xLP debut Empress Rising, which RidingEasy Records released in April 1st, 2014. The second album, Vænir, followed April 28th, 2015. The 2-song Lord of Suffering / Die in Haze EP was issued in late 2016 amid the band’s relentless touring schedule in order to tide fans over until the next full length.
Noisey calls Monolord “universally beloved” and “Swedish doom royalty”, while Consequence of Sound deems them, “a truly modern sound: recognizably doom, but with glistening production values and adventurous songcraft.” Vænir landed on countless Album of the Year lists in 2015, and Rust is poised to open an entirely new range of possibilities for Monolord.
Rust will be available on LP, CD and download on September 29th, 2017 via RidingEasy Records.