Ceremonies of Morbidity by Uncoffined

Release date: October 24, 2016
Label: Memento Mori Productions

Uncoffined is a death/doom band from the UK, signed to Memento Mori Productions, and their latest release via the label is entitled, Ceremonies of Morbidity. If you want your death/doom consolidated, not simply a mix of death metal here, slower doom sections there, Ceremonies of Morbidity is the wine in your chalice. Legitimately slow and heavy, with lurching downpicks and chord transitions that might make those of defunct doom stalwarts Cathedral seem frantic in comparison, Uncoffined play real doom/death for fans of the amalgamated version of the style. Uncoffined doesn’t play the aforementioned loosely associated style of death/doom with clear, distinct segments of the two styles combined.

The guitars are heavy and the drums plod. The vocals are comprised of unintelligible guttural growls. We’ve heard this style before. A fitting description may not be necessary for you fans of the macabre sub-genre. What you’ll need to know is that this band never so much as picks up the pace beyond mid-tempo, and even that circumstance occurs rarely. The band likes to put movie samples in to start the tracks, and they all seem to come from the old George A. Romero horror flick Dawn of the Dead, which is no problem to me. The movie samples are quite fitting actually. The old trick helps add character to the songs, the way old stenchy death/doom bands used to in the humble beginnings of death metal.

Ritualesque, never peaking faster than 4/4 time signature, fitting for an old castle or graveyard, Uncoffined clearly do well at this style. The guitar riffs have plenty of grit and the guitars are downtuned exceptionally, the riffs never sounding like lithe tremolo-picking on the upper strings. Instead, they stay honed-in on the sixth and fifth strings along the first frets, besides some rung notes for exception.

Newcomers to this style might fall in love with it. Longtime fans will nod along with the plodding tempos. It’s quite the misconception that playing slow is easy, though Uncoffined make it seem that way, being at such ease with playing this variety of extreme metal. This is however the reason why death/doom bands are at a premium, because most fans really think that playing fast is where it’s at, but bands like Uncoffined play a little disclaimer to go with the music – it’s actually harder for a band to sound original playing slow, creeping tempos, considering the dearth of bands that the sub-genre has spewed forth before, all pre-disposed to doing the same thing, but the members of Uncoffined don’t sound like newcomers to the scene. They reek this old stench like they’ve been on tour for weeks with nary a shower stall in the clubs they visit. So, dedication sensed, music passionately appreciated, I write this review to any fan of doom/death to hear this UK band kick out the jams. You won’t be disappointed.

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