Clouds Taste Satanic return to giant journeys on challenging opus ‘The Glitter of Infinite Hell’

Everyone is excited for the Halloween season because of the return of the beloved “Stranger Things” series. I get that. I’m one of those people, and I’m really looking forward to see where they go next, as well as what that weird red thing in the sky is. But that’s not the only beastly treat that awaits you this autumnal holiday season.

Brooklyn-based Clouds Taste Satanic are the perfect band for this time of year, and their fourth long-player “The Glitter of Infinite Hell” will land in your lap, ready to take you on a mysterious journey. The instrumental doom four-piece have been very active ever since their formation in 2013, releasing a new record every year since 2014. This new one is a beefy monster, as their followers surely expect, with four tracks stretching over a hefty 74 minutes. This harkens a bit back to their debut “To Sleep Beyond the Earth” and its mammoth two tracks, and not as much to their past two records, where the songs were more concise, so you’re going to need some time to sit back and absorb this album. But that’s well worth your time as the band—guitarists Steve Scavuzzo and Brian Bauhs, bassist Sean Bay, and drummer Greg Acampora—delivers four songs that all have their own personalities and environments, and even without words, they manage to convey a thick sense of pain and dread.

“Greed” opens the record, and it’s an 18:40 heater that starts with drone welling up before the first punches are thrown. The track has a bruising, dusty feel like you’re being dragged through the desert, and despite some sludgy moments, we’re mostly baking in the sun. Some turns remind a bit of modern-era Earth, while the riffs chew, and pace begins to stomp guts. The guitars slide as the track heads into psychedelic realms, and from there, the riffs give off heat, the pace drubs, and it all fades into the distance. “Treachery” goes 18:10, and trippy noises and thick basslines get the storm brewing. The song kicks in fully, while the playing bruises and heads into the swamps. The leads burn and bring more humidity, as the track lays in the punches slowly but heavily, and the melodies stretch into a weird haze. Out of that atmosphere comes a stomping gallop, whipping up dust and creating chaos. A heavy stoner vibe lands in the final minutes before soloing rips out, and madness compounds.

“Violence” runs 17:48, making it the shortest song on the record, and it gets punchy and aggravated right away, as muscular riffs begin flexing, and the interplay gets gritty and psychedelic. The guitar work lets off noxious smoke, the kind that makes your brain feel like it’s floating among the stars, while the band’s strong work together helps glue all the various parts into one. Later, the tempo cools down, though the band keeps striking, and melody laps over everything like a wave. The guitars burn off, and the final minutes are shrouded in fog. “Wrath” closes the record and is the longest track at 18:56. It’s ugly and ominous, as the song gets darkly melodic, and more psyche vibes settle into the mix. Some weirdness is injected into the play, adding a cool touch, and the band hits on a heavy shuffle that douses everything in heaviness. A burst of space sludge spreads, while the guitars are open and spacious, the pace lights up, and we’re into the mouth of hell. The band puts all irons in the fire as we reach the end, with dual guitars aligning and dizzying, and the song barreling its way into strangeness.

Clouds Taste Satanic make records that keep you on the edge of sanity, and “The Glitter of Infinite Hell” is another spellbinding entry to their molten catalog. They are massive beasts in the live setting, and this record will provide even more fodder for their stage actions. This is an album that takes some time to fully absorb, but once you do, each visit beyond your initial voyage will reveal different folds of hell that will scorch your body and soul.

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