Thuum—Through Smoke, Comes Fire EP (2018) PREVIEW

Thuum—Through Smoke, Comes Fire EP (2018)

Thuum—Through Smoke, Comes Fire EP (2018)


Self-released. Release date Monday 19 February 2018

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  • Bear—Guitars and vocals
  • Andy—Guitar
  • Luke—Bass
  • Joe—Drums


  1. Intro (instrumental)
  2. Worthless
  3. Hafgufa
  4. Through smoke, comes fire


Hailing from Bournemouth, at the south end of the island, crawls Thuum with their debut EP Through Smoke, Comes Fire and it is colossal. This is already promising to be the heaviest release of 2018.

Black and white photo of the band standing in front of a stage

Thuum—They’re heavier than they look

Thuum are firmly lodged in the doom, sludge, southern-groove genre and they own it. Within four tracks Thuum manage to say more and generate more excitement than many bands with two or three times as many tracks.

Intro (instrumental)” (track 1) opens gradually, a fade up from silence. A quiet drone and a primitive-sounding chant, overplayed by a bell-like, heavily-reverbed guitar punching out a melody. And then the granite-crushing power of the track truly unleashes. It is slow and grinding but damn is it heavy and beautiful.

Worthless” (track 2) is a powerhouse of southern-infused sludge metal. Slowly meandering, bass-heavy riffs and sorrowful guitar solos provide a perfect background to Bear’s growling vocals. If you’re a fan of Down and Corrosion of Conformity you will not be disappointed. They’re like a fusion of Down and Mastodon—Mastodown, if you will.

Hafgufa” (track 3) begins with a blast of drums. then the pace is quickened for a song that winds itself around a simple, bouncing riff, that starts and stops, but never stops its unrelenting pace and heaviness. The song is cut in two with another lamenting guitar solo. “Can you hear me shouting out his name?” Bear yells—it’s reminiscent of Mastodon’s Troy Sanders. It may be the shortest song on the EP but it sure as hell packs a punch.

Through smoke, comes fire” (track 4). The title track. Another drums opening, which feels like a gentle nod of the head to Bonham’s drum sound in Led Zeppelin’s “When The Levee Breaks”. A ponderous, bass-heavy riff builds and layers for a minute until it breaks down into an ascending, walking riff. This is truly majestic. A fusion of influences, progressive and doom, always heavy but never indulgent or aggressive. Then vocals, both growling and howling. It reminded me a lot of Mastodon’s album Leviathan. The tracks meanders through a melodic, harmonic progression to a gentle conclusion.


Wow! This is a near-perfect debut EP. I truly hope Thuum get the attention they deserve. This is precision crafted doom/sludge metal from the deep south (of England). I want to hear more. If through smoke, comes fire, I want to see what truly happens when the fire takes hold. Definitely a band to take notice of and follow over the next few years.

Now, if you’ll excuse me. I’m going to give this 24 minutes 39 seconds offering another spin.

Review score: 98%


Stampede Press UK contacted me a few weeks back, inviting me to preview this EP.

I have no connections to either Stampede Press UK or Thuum. I’m not being paid to review this. But I did get a free digital copy of the album to review—which is pretty cool.

Many thanks to Rob from Stampede Press UK, and Thuum.


BONUS: Stone Sour—Creeping Death (2015)

So many good tracks have come out recently…

Another one from the recent Record Store Day, Stone Sour released a five track EP, Meanwhile In Burbank…, featuring this song “Creeping Death”, originally recorded by Metallica, from Ride the Lightning (1984).

It is reportedly going to be made available shortly as a digital download. Followed shortly by two more five-track EPs.

Haar—Haar EP (2010)

Haar—2010 EP (2010)

Haar—2010 EP (2010)


Recorded at Arcadia Audio, Edinburgh in March 2010. Self-released EP.


  • Gareth—Vocals
  • Chris Blom—Guitars
  • Guillaume Martin—Guitars
  • Steve—Bass
  • Hamish MacKintosh—Drums

(Band line-up according to Encyclopedia Metallum. No information on the EP itself.)


  1. Whisper serenities eve
  2. To forgive an enemy
  3. Without form or void


After two or three listens to this EP, I chose instead to listen to Guns N’ Roses—Chinese Democracy (2008). I guess that has to tell you something about my experience of listening to this album.

I really wanted to like this album. They are Scottish, for a start; hailing from Edinburgh, the city of my birth. Their lead singer is called Gareth. Their name is ‘Haar’, which is an east-coast Scots and Northern English word for coastal fog. What could possibly go wrong?!

I just didn’t connect with this album. I listened to it first a couple of months ago: popped it into a CD player, lay back on my bed in the dark and… suffered. Actually, that’s a bit harsh, but I didn’t give it a second listen until this week.

To be fair, it wasn’t as bad as I had remembered. (That’s not a glowing review really, is it?)

Let’s get one thing out of the way, to begin with: the production on this EP isn’t great. But then I wouldn’t really expect it to be on what I assume is a self-financed, independent release. The drums and vocals in particular sound… distant. It sounds like it was recorded in a hurry, in a church hall. I can accept that. I wouldn’t mark it down on that, to be honest. It is what it is, and it’s still better quality than many of the tape-of-a-tape-of-a-tape hand-me-downs of metal albums that I listened to back in the mid- to late-80s.

The artwork I really like. You can tell immediately that this band has a foot in the black metal camp because the band logo is veering towards unreadable. That seems to be an obligatory requirement of black metal bands. But then the progressive element claws it back towards readable. The EP cover has a mysterious, creepy, smokey/dare I say ‘haar-y’ feel to it. It’s black and white and simple all over. I like it.

So… the music. I described an album a couple of weeks ago as being perfect as background noise. I found this to be similar, but mainly because it didn’t hold my attention for long enough. The three songs on this EP are long (all over seven minutes, two over nine), and atmospheric with meandering twists and turns. I suspect that they are too long, though. “Without form…”, indeed.

This is impressionist metal, without clarity or detail. I can appreciate why some people might like it. Sadly, though it just didn’t move me. It never captured my imagination. Didn’t get my heart racing, or my mind engaged with…

Sorry, I just got distracted there checking my email. It was a bit like that really.


I really wanted to like it, being a home team and all. I do appreciate what they were trying to do. It just didn’t connect with me. Sorry guys!

Review score: 40%

27 / Twin Zero—27:00 (2005)

27/:TwinZero—27:00 (2005)

27/TwinZero—27:00 (2005)


27: Songs written and recorded, May 2005 at The Garment District. Twin Zero: “In Sha’ Allah” recorded at Rainstick Studios, Nottingham; “Monolith (Reprise)” recorded at The Distraction Room @ Zi Studios, Nottingham. 27/Twin Zero: Sampled elements from tracks 1-4 by 27 and TwinZero. Remix and additional guitar: Reuben Gotto. Mastered at Ideal Mastering, London.



  • Maria Christoper—Vocals, guitars
  • Neil Coulon—Drums, clarinet
  • Ayal Naor—Baritone guitar, samplers

Twin Zero:

  • Karl Middleton—Vocals
  • Bing Garcia—Guitar
  • Dave Cheeseman—Keyboards
  • Reuben Gotto—Guitar
  • Anf Morfitt—Bass
  • Si Hutchby—Drums


  1. 27—Half Life (Half)
  2. 27—Downfall of the upright
  3. Twin Zero—In Sha’ Allah
  4. Twin Zero—Monolith (Reprise)
  5. 27/Twin Zero—0027


27 are an American indie / lo-fi rock band from Cambridge/Boston, Massachusetts, Twin Zero are a British prog rock band from I guess in or near Nottingham in the UK. This EP it seems came about following a tour that the two bands shared in 2005.

The EP features two tracks by each band followed by a final track created from samples of the previous four songs by Reuben Gotto (Guitarist with Twin Zero). Two bands, 27 and Twin Zero (00), release a 27 minutes’ long EP called… wait for it… ’27:00′. See what they did there?

The EP opens with a very fragile song “Half Life” by 27Maria Christoper has a beautifully  delicate voice which put me in mind of Björk (without the craziness) and Melissa auf der Maur (MadM). Their second song, “The Downfall of the Upright” is a little rockier with a very simple but catchy bass riff. This definitely put me in mind of MadM’s first solo album.

British progists Twin Zero‘s first song “In Sha’ Allah” begins with a delicately picked acoustic riff in front of a chorus of voices. The vibe of the song put me in mind of Missouri-based band Less (one of my favourite internet musical finds).The sound, however, reminds me of something from Alice in Chains’ acoustic EPs Sap (1992) or Jar of Flies (1994). Their second song “Monolith (Reprise)” is more a laid back, piano led offering that kicks up a bit of a pace about halfway through. Think lo-hi Spiritualized and you’ve more or less got it.

The final track is a fusion of the previous four tracks on the EP. It’s very well done, so much so that it took me about five or six listens through to realise what they had done. As a whole the track reminds me in places of Nine Inch Nails.


This is yet another CD in this project that I really like. It contains what sounds like a fusion of a few of my favourite bands but also manages to retain its own identity. What could have made this release better is simply it being longer.

Review score: 90%