While being pissed off and turbo-charged will always be an important part of metalheaddom, sometimes you just want to wallow in stygian darkness. That’s where Swarm of Flies come in. The Brooklyn-based project of guitarist Ken Wohlrob (Eternal Black, End of Hope) plays a far-out sort of doom that not only sounds good to the stoned, but incorporates just enough overwhelming hopelessness to entrance fans of primal goth music. For fans of acts like Tombs and Take Over And Destroy, this is definitely a band to know.
On their latest track “Writhe,” the band — who this time around has a combined pedigree including acts like Geezer, Reign of Zaius, Matte Black, and Raw Milk — strike that chord hard and then swim in the reverb echoing off of it. The song is full of throbbing shadows and Americana twangs, landing somewhere between the music one uses to summon an old god and the opening credits of Ren & Stimpy. Through it all intone the vocals of Matte Black and Dead Satellites’ Matt McAlpin, who lends the track an especially hypnotic and arcane sort of weight.
“Originally, Matt was going to play guitar, but he decided to sing instead and sent back those cool, moody vocal layers,” says guitarist Ken Wohlrob. “That is the fun of Swarm of Flies. Suddenly the song had this distinct Pink Floyd vibe, which made me think, ‘This needs slide guitar.’ Pat from Geezer is one of my favorite guitarists and a hell of a slide player. He put so much emotion in those ghostly lines.”
Check out Swarm of Flies’ “Writhe” below:
“Writhe” is available for purchase on Swarm of Flies’ Bandcamp, alongside their equally creepy and overpowering single “Wendigo.”
Words by Chris Krovatin