When we travel into the desert for music, it’s into the world of rock that we tend to find ourselves travelling into more likely than not. That particular world of psychedelia is one of my favorite areas to explore in all of its sunbaked glory, and it’s long been begging to be pioneered by metal. Very few bands have crossed the sands in any meaningful way even as doom is perfectly poised to drench it all in glorious bloodshed. Where many have only tapped into that potential, it’s with their debut that Dunerider absolutely flourishes.
It would be too easy for any of us to initially mistake Dunerider as another desert rock act purely by their name alone, but it would take all of maybe twenty seconds for any notion of that false idea to be instantly dispelled. When I say this is thick doom the likes of which is comparable to that of the utterly oppressive heat of the sun after days of aimless wandering, I mean that every inch of what “Ruins” brings forward is absolutely uncompromising! This is a debut that has the very echoes of Conan and massive presences of other doom names of that ilk that many of us are constantly mouth-watering with how rare a performance like this is, and it’s with the quality that’s at a consistent high for the entire record that Dunerider immediately sets themselves apart as a band more than worthy of investigation for any excavator of worthwhile heaviness. In each of these tracks, “Ruins” always serves up a powerful concoction of bone-crunching riffage and a surprisingly fitting undertone that’s quite ethereal to make for a mixture that’s delightfully varied even if we were to take into account just a single song with the album as a whole being no less than staggering that same regard. And when we do just that, it’s hard to look at what has been accomplished with “Ruins” and not be staggered.
Dunerider has done a tremendous thing crafted this record and bringing in elements from all over doom to take us into the shifting sands under the oppressive eye of the blazing sun and the mindful vigils of the constellations the likes of which is downright engrossing in every form. It’s by the end that “Ruins” has left such an impression that it’s virtually irresistible to not fall back into the scorching dirt for another round of the excellence that Dunerider already has down to a science, and it’s simply bewildering from the start.
LISTEN to “Ruins” on Bandcamp here.
LIKE Dunerider on Facebook here.