Doom metal band Church releases new album

Local doom metal band Church released its new album last week, and you can get in on this hypnotic, diverse and enthralling crusher for a fitting $6.66.

Titled Unanswered Hymns, the album is another high point for the band, which started playing shows in August of last year and have already found themselves opening for legendary bands, from Eyehategod on Halloween to the almighty Yob and Will Haven in March.

The album only holds three songs, but when your shortest track is almost 12 minutes long, it’s not like you’re missing any content. The opening track, “Dawning,” slithers out of the gate with heavy fuzz, slowly adding in more density, distortion, crashing drums and ethereal hymns as it goes along. Every track here is stellar doom: songs hit long periods of ponderous, pulsating loops and dronings, all while interweaving stretches of open air before returning to slamming walls of sound. Influences at play range from Celtic Frost to Pink Floyd to Pallbearer, said Chris Lemos, on guitar and vocals.

Patrick Hills recorded, mastered and mixed the album at Earth Tone Studios in Rocklin, a process that as a whole took about a month. Recording itself took about five days, spread over two weekends.

“I’m really stoked on it,” Lemos said in a recent phone interview. “I think we’re all pretty proud of it. Pat made it sound incredible. It’s probably the most proud I’ve ever been of a recording that I’ve ever done.”

That’s saying something, considering that he’s recorded as a member of local bands Plague Widow and xTom Hanx, two acts that have put out stellar releases.

For now, the record is only available through their Bandcamp page, but soon enough, they’ll be releasing a tape of it via Transylvanian Tapes of Oakland. The exact date of the release is unclear, but it’s known that tapes will be available at their album release show (and also the start of their West Coast tour) on June 4 at Press Club, opening for Ufomammut, as well as Usnea and Lycus.

There are also plans to release the album as an LP later this year through Battleground Records out of Tuscon, Arizona.

Check the album out, and follow the link to their Bandcamp page to see a video for their song “Stargazer.” Their next local show is at Starlite Lounge on Saturday, April 25, opening for 16, Brainoil and Kowloon Walled City.

Church is Eva Rose on vocals, Chris Lemos on guitar and vocals, Matt Silver on drums, Ben Cathcart on bass and Shann Marriott Jr. on guitar.

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