Birmingham doomsters Kroh recently released their second album Pyres (available here) following great live performances at Damnation Festival and Bloodstock Open Air, among various smaller gigs. 

We asked guitarist Paul Kenney about the 3 albums that have influenced him the most becoming the musician he is today, which resulted in a very interesting and eclectic selection. 

Adam and the Ants – Kings of the Wild Frontier

This is my reset album, the album I go to when I lose direction, the album that’s been with me the longest in my life. I remember owning this as a tiny child being allowed on the record player with headphones and playing this to myself and being lost in a world of weird sounds, I was about 5. Playing this opened my ears to the fact that there are no rules to music, you can do exactly what you want. There’s so much going on in this album, it’s layered, the influences are from all over the place, it’s come out of punk but sounds nothing like punk. It has the right attitude. I’m glad this album found me and not something bland from the same time, my life would have been very different if this album wasn’t in it. 

I still pick this up every time I find it on vinyl at boot sales, there is an American version with different track listing that I’m still hoping pops up cheap soon. I normally give people a copy when they come round to my house, they all tell me it’s rubbish. They are wrong.

Portishead – Dummy

This appeared when I was 16, I played it constantly for years. It’s got a feeling that I can’t explain, it’s dark, eerie, but makes me feel happy. I like to lose myself in the gloom of it all. It has amazing guitar sounds like they are taken from Spaghetti westerns, like Adam and the Ants. Maybe it’s just that sound I like? This is my Autumn album, dark evenings, rain this on my headphones, perfect.

This sounds like no one else. There’s influences from all over the place, it sounds like 60s Spy films but at the same time modern, even though it’s now quite old. In the early 90s a lot of 60s things were on the tv like The Prisoner, Pink Panther films, The Ipcress File. I loved these and this music seems to have fallen out of that world, but with a darker edge that seemed to just match exactly with where I was in 1994.

Goatsnake – Flower of Disease

This is a perfect album, the guitar sounds are fuzzy and low, amazing vocals, everything about it is so heavy. But it has a feeling, a bluesy sad feeling that again makes me happy. This is an album I again disappear into when I forget what I like. I work a lot, long hours. I get to points regularly that I forget what I like, what I like doing, I forget how to rest. These three albums reset me to who I am.

I managed to see Goatsnake live at a tiny venue supporting Electric Wizard on a night that rained so heavily everywhere was flooded. An amazing gig to about 12 people that changed my life. This is doomy and slow, but has songs, big choruses, and fast bits. Now if I could just get that guitar sound!

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