Man in the Woods – Badlands

In the ever-expanding landscape that is doom metal and its contemporaries, it can be all but effortless to find yourself lost in the ocean of other acts simply because of pure happenstance even if you were the most quality name in the world. It’s a game of chance at some point whether or not you find the right audience with the right ear for your material, and there is always something supremely gratifying about finding new names of excellence in that deep, dense ocean whether you find it after ages of digging it or it luckily being plopped before your feet. When I first came upon Man in the Woods just earlier tonight, I found myself hopeful given the band’s history and all that went into their brand new effort, but it’s the whole reality of this effort that leaves me bewildered that I was presented with such an album of immense magnitude.

It’s not uncommon for a band to reuse old material for new releases whether it be a simple copy-paste job of pure laziness or a full redoing of those old songs to then find them accompanied by fresh music to greet listeners of all sorts for the first time, but it doesn’t always make for a successful execution if you simply don’t do it right. Should you want an example of how to do it beat-for-beat without a single fumble to be had in sight then you simply must turn your eyes to Man in the Woods with the nine tracks that were brought forth for “Badlands”. While this is spiritually the sequel to the band’s debut EP, aptly named “Badlands Part One”, it’s with that same material combined with brand new works that we’re able to see Man in the Woods for all that their capable of with every single shred of their power far from anything to sneeze at in any form whatsoever. A scathing and gripping combination of doom, grunge, stoner rock, and more than a little sludge, the entirety of “Badlands” is something that simply cannot be ignored for all that it manages to deliver in an exquisite yet deliciously rugged fashion that pulls everything together magnificently. The very skies burn and the planets shift at the beck and call of Man in the Woods for all that they summon forth with each riff and powerful crunch that every minute brings in all nine of these tracks with the very end of “Badlands” feeling as complete as it is tragic for you simply don’t want it to end.

To find an act like this is the never-ending underground and all that it has to offer is a find like few others for all that it manages to bring forth in every possible moment of its material with nothing short of a damn good time the only result that is to be had for any who find themselves before the awesome power that Man in the Woods wields with stunning proficiency. Reverence for the past and worship for the future is at the core of what’s brought forth for “Badlands”, and it’s clear with everything that is this creation that we can rest easy with the knowledge that this is but the tip of the spear for what this act can still bring to the table.

LISTEN to “Badlands” on Bandcamp here.

LIKE Man in the Woods on Facebook here.

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