I stumbled upon crusty pioneers DOOM inconspicuously. Riding in a buddy’s work van with his iTunes on shuffle, “Police Bastard” came on and I was immediately ensnared. It was instantaneously obvious this music came from originators. These suspicions were confirmed: the band formed in Birmingham in 1987, becoming a quick favourite of BBC’s John Peel. Their sound is a raw amalgamation of drawling, sludgy bass heavy punk/grindcore with grunting vocals and sloppy production — a simple comparison would be the lovechild of ‘80s era Amebix and Napalm Death, distinctive for their ahead-of-the-times, grindcore-styled beats coupled with huge anthems. Throughout the years, members came and went, but the band always released music in a similar vein. In 2013, DOOM has a patchwork face, entirely composed of members within the DOOM realm. On their upcoming studio album – the first since 2001’s World of Shit – listeners will hear barks from Denis, Bri on guitar, Stick on drums and Scoot on bass. Thankfully, this means that, for the first time in their inconsistent history, the band will even tour across Canada.
“It’s a very DOOM album, some killer d-beat riffs and some variants thrown in, some monster, chuggy songs and just plain different songs (for us) all goes to making up the ‘corrupt fucking system’ album,” types Stick, who caught up with BeatRoute via e-mail. The time difference, along with the stresses of handling their upcoming tour, meant this worked best. His responses are slightly edited for spelling, grammar, and punctuation. “We formed our own label, Black Cloud Records, so we intend to release it ourselves, then maybe license it to other labels. We just feel the need to keep control of our stuff after years of being ripped off by people we obviously never expected it from.
“My personal hope was to write some songs like [their 1988 debut, War Crimes (Inhuman Beings)] era, ‘basic’ songs,” he continues. “We were a naive bunch those days and didn’t overthink the music and wanted to do that: play something that was almost instinct, feed off the riffs and what each other was coming out with and just ‘bash ’em out.’ Being able to set up and record as we went along worked out great, we could capture the moment when it came together.”
It’s DOOM’s remarkable consistency that has made them so legendary. They’ve been featured on over 30 recordings and remained largely the same. Though latter years saw them become faster and more intense (definitely associating with the SFL powerviolence sound), the ‘corrupt fucking system’ mentality has always remained.
“Unfortunately, we still tend to find the same things are still going on, in the forms of religion, war and governments, they might change but they never seem to get better, so we write about what affects us on a personal level, or a global one, there’s always some bastard out there who’s gonna ruin your day. So, what better catharsis than make a song out of it and shout it?” writes Stick.
“We play to our strengths: some might call us a one trick pony, but I like to think we have honed our art rather than become ‘better musicians’ and gone on to be a technical metal outfit. Like I said, I enjoy that playing from the gut, rather than trying to be extreme, or technical.” He finishes jokingly, “Technical for us is all finishing in the same place.”
See DOOM on Friday, April 5 with Dayglo Abortions, Greenback High, and Skabiis at Broken City. Tickets are available from Broken City, Sloth Records, and Ticketfly.com.
By Sarah KitteringhamAB, Alberta