Not many would think to combine death rock with sludge metal, but that’s exactly what this band from Portland has been doing for the past six years.
Across four albums Atriarch have given their own twist to the protogoth movement that was started by Christian Death way back in the early eighties. Especially for the US Rozz Williams was the original goth archetype with his larger than life on stage persona. Atriarch’s vocalist Lenny Smith tries to emulate that theatrical, derailed side although filtered through a decidedly metal amp. On his clean, foreboding vocals you can hear the echoes of the death rock of old, but when he starts shrieking and howling he sounds a lot like Bethlehem or Funeralium, in fact. The music itself is equally unhinged and twisted; traveling back from goth to its postpunk roots and coming out the arse end of the foulest sludge you can rub yourself in. Like an alternate history of Goth, this is where that road could have led the style to if had taken a few different turns in the past three decades.