Samothrace is a band whose debut 2xLP, Life's Trade, I've been enjoying for a few years. I accepted long ago that Samothrace is just one of those bands that no one talks about, as it seemed like I was the only one who really loved this band. As the buzz around the new album, Reverence to Stone, started to mount, though, it became clear that a lot of people that I know really dig this band.
Samothrace bring the slow, thunderous, crushing riffage, with emphasis on crushing. This 35-minute LP is heavier, louder, and more intense than Life's Trade, and retains the infectious melodies and solos that made the debut so impossible to deny. The tones here are majestic and melancholic, as all doom should be, but these guys really, really do it well. The slow-motion riffs and agonized vocals seem to come in waves, and threaten to overtake you if you're not especially careful. But you're probably best-served to let you guard down and really let the record was over you with it's resplendent, graceful tides of misery. Because the emotion and power of this record is really the key. It's heartbreaking and tragic, yet in the end sacrifices none of the despondent beauty that characterizes the band's sound.
The LP and CD are available now from 20 Buck Spin; you can also stream the album or purchase a digital download here.