Taking a moniker from the devastating World War I battle that lasted 300 days and resulted in nearly 800,000 casualties between the Allies and Central Powers, the hardcore-laden doom of Montpellier, France’s Verdun possesses enough heaviness to echo the immense brutality of its namesake. The band, which emerged in 2011 and released its first EP, The Cosmic Escape of Admiral Masuka EP the same year, has been steadily building a following with its genre-bending music and crushing live performances alongside the likes of YOB, Eyehategod, and Electric Wizard. Now, the four-piece—which currently includes vocalist Paulo Rui, guitarist Mathiue Croux, bassist Jay Pinelli, and drummer Florian Celdran—are finally unveiling their debut full-length, The Eternal Drift’s Canticles.
Recorded by the band’s own Mathiue and mastered by Tad Doyle (TAD, Brothers of the Sonic Cloth), The Eternal Drift’s Canticles’ blend of psychedelic metal, post-hardcore, and cavernous atmospheres are not for the faint of heart or casual doom listener. Most canticles, psalms, or other forms of worshipful music are meant to lift their audience up to the heavens, but in Verdun’s collective hands, each of the album’s five-tracks hit like a rust-covered anchor scouring the blackened bottom of the deepest sea—though with subject matter that encompasses both ritual disembowelment (“Mankind Seppuku”) and general personal disfigurement (“Self-Inflicted Mutilation”) that’s really no surprise. Still, there’s a measure of beauty within every darkened corner, that along with the album’s rich, “live” sound and dual clean/screamed vocals will captivate those who dare become immersed in the band’s haunting universe.
The Eternal Drift’s Canticles is out today on 2xLP and CD through Head Records, Throatruiner Records and Lost Pilgrims Records. Listen to the album in full now.
Jamie Ludwig suggests you put down any sharp objects before listening to 'The Eternal Drift’s Canticles,' in case you get any funny ideas. She’s on Twitter.