When one thinks of suitable names for doom bands, the name usually suites the dense, claustrophobic nature of the music. For example, with names like Paradise Lost, Electric Wizard and Cathedral you can practically visualise the music before you’ve even heard it. So, when German sludge/doomsters The Moth arrived at Castle Worship Metal we really didn’t know what to expect from them. Fortunately, we can happily report that they’re nowhere near as annoying as the furry winged buggers they’re named after….although we are in no position to comment on whether or not they’re attracted to the light! Considering they play sludged-up doom metal, we’d say probably not!
Having been recorded over two sessions in 2016, Hysteria is an intriguing listen. The bass is front and centre in the mix and while not as devastating as the subsonic rumble from the likes of With The Dead, it still has the potential to liquify bowels from about twenty paces. And, when combined with The Moth’s down tuned guitars, it makes for a seriously oppressive listen.
While not all ten tracks that make up Hysteria hit the mark, there’s more than enough quality on display with the likes of “Empty Heart”, “Blackness”, “Fail” and abum highlight “Brachial”, with its sparse arrangements, giving a doom fan plenty to sink their teeth into.
This is by no means a perfect album – to be truthful it feels like The Moth are missing a trick by not fully exploiting the juxtaposition between the melodic vocals of bassist Cecile Ash and the more aggressive semi growls used by guitarist Freden Mohrdriek – but there’s enough quality on display to make this a reasonably minor quibble and ensure a very bright and attractive future for The Moth! 7/10