Look, I keep saying that I'm not a fan of sludge, and yet I keep receiving lots of it. What did I do to deserve this? The great
God of heavy metal down below is punishing me for some reason and why? I must have written something nice about a sludge band once or something.
Anyhoo, I try to keep an open mind, and there is something good in many of the sludge things I receive - but only, and I do mean this, ONLY if the bands manage to mix the sludge with doom, death or thrash in a nice way and avoid the constant screaming which is so bloody annoying.
Izah and Fire Walk With Us, both from the Netherlands, have teamed up to release a split EP. It's only got three songs which you might venture isn't a lot. No, but Izah's track is more than eleven minutes, so there you go. Three tracks = more than 23 minutes.
The eleven minutes the Izah track lasts don't actually feel like eleven minutes. It's well-balanced between structured, heavy music and jam-feel doom sludge, and it's therefore quite varied. Not too much screaming, very important. Izah focus on instrumentality and this is good.
Fire Walk With Us have a more melodic approach and, by the way, it's all instrumental (so no screaming). It's still a sludgy guitar sound, but it has a lighter feel, and even more diversity than their Dutch colleagues.
A nice appetizer for those who like fairly small doses of sludge. Worth a try - especially because there's so little screaming!