Ten Ton Slug
Blood and Slime
31st October 2017 – Self-released
01. Slug Grinder
02. Matriarch of Slime
Ten Ton Slug are solid as fuck.
Blood and Slime is a three-track EP firmly in the Orange Goblin vein; it aims for a good-time doom/sludge vibe and hits it pretty immediately, earning them a place among other solid releases this year such as BongCauldron‘s stellar Binge and Gurt‘s latest party-doom offering Skullossus.
The EP sounds heavily familiar thanks to their beefy, thickly-layered sludge sound, which helps inform their own take on the genre; this is a guitar-heavy release, often focusing on clarity of tone over distorted ferocity. The riff creativity is a standout feature; where lesser bands might rely on pure volume or velocity, Ten Ton Slug’s guitar work is active and energetic, elevating the vitality of the record. They’re also distinctive and memorable. If the EP maybe sounds a little too familiar in places, they certainly play to their strengths; you can get away with being a bit by-the-book when you’re appropriately thunderous.
There are some more subtle nuances that help to tie the release together; the samples at the beginning and conclusion of the EP help to bookmark the busy, dense tracks and set the tone for their bizarre slug-themed horror vibe. Elsewhere, the drums follow the guitars and provide a solid backdrop, but the solid grooves are peppered with deft fills which give the EP a bit more colour.
Ten Ton Slug gun for a fairly straightforward shtick and nail it; in terms of improvements, there’s less a sense that they need to patch up their sound and rather just to continue on this trajectory. There’s definitely an album in waiting, though it’d be good to hear them try some shorter songs as well; their approach isn’t as daft as Gurt’s cartoonish aesthetic but there’s an inherent fond silliness to their execution. Throughout the record I felt their focus on distinction and clarity would lead them to “doom banger” territory, so shorter tracks with a focus on hooks might suit them on a future release.
I don’t like to show my workings much but the initial note when I came to write up this review was “fuck yeah.” Have fun with a mini EP from a spooky, promising band – and just in time for Halloween.