Sombre Doom is the new EP from Dead Congregation. The riffing is in the same Immolation and Incantation style with simple but effective variations as on their past releases while the production is a less compresssed version of Dead Congregation’s prior album, Promulgation of the Fall, some of The Best Underground Metal of 2014. Thankfully gone are the cheesy Kerry King style leads and guitarists AV and TK have markedly improved the song structure.
Dead Congregation successfully compartmentalize their compositions on Sombre Doom in a similar manner as Incantation did on Diabolical Conquest. Promulgation of the Fall stripped out the Greek Orthodox atmospherics of its predecessor Graves of the Archangels and replaced them with doomy bridges, introductions, and codas that wore out their welcome upon repeat listening. Note that their idols Incantation declined similarly on Mortal Throne of Nazarene. Sombre Doom has none of that and divides its material into two tracks: the first a lengthy death-doom introduction and the second a cathartic death metal climax. Perhaps the overall structure of each individual track could be more melodically flowing and narrative like Onward to Golgotha instead of reflecting Immolation’s occasional cyclicality but as a whole Sombre Doom’s demarcation of the material provides a adequate listening structure. More modern groups should trim the filler to release such effective EPs instead of weighing down albums whose only highlights total two to three effective riffs with less effective material detracting from that which is worthwhile.