Barbarian Hermit opened Bloodstock in 2019 and by all accounts set the bar high for the scores of bands who followed over the long weekend. We managed to chat with them (in drunk blurry-o-vision) the day after, and they gifted us a copy of their latest release.
They owe a lot to Black Sabbath and the doomier end of the spectrum in terms of style, tuning down and teabagging the stage being the image conveyed especially throughout the aptly titled “Black Mass”. Quality headbanging material and heavier than a heavy thing sealed in concrete, put inside a steel coffin and sent to Jupiter.
They still pack some groove into the package though. It’s not all misery and gloom, they (unwittingly?) throw in some brighter sections which would get a crowd jumping rather than just exercising their neck muscles. “No Sleep”, for example, kicks off at a much faster pace and though not exactly breakneck thrash is enough to get some interesting pit action started.
“Lifebreather” shows that the band have a trippy edge with a lengthy, laid back into before laying down the heavier grooves. At nigh on eleven minutes, closer “Laniakea” brings epic to the table… and still leaves you wanting more once it’s done. If this thing was any more meaty it would have fed a family of ten for the recent yuletide festivities.
It’s no wonder they went down a storm in August. If you like your metal heavy in the traditional sense, and you’ve not got this album yet, then you should be grabbing a copy now.
Header image: Down the Barrel Photography
Solitude and Savagery is out now, available from Amazon [sponsored link] and elsewhere