What we have here is a bunch of eccentrics making wonderfully organic and believable doom metal, but with their shared, skewed perspective adding alien colors and textures at every step. Opener “Gannet” shuffles and lurches like a drug addled VOIVOD, before unleashing a torrent of bluesy sludge circling and swooping like a hungry vulture. “Mrityunjaya” begins with a prime SABBATH-ian thud, veering off on a woozy, acid rock tangent toward a jarring, discordant final descent into blind terror. “Imposter” is a more dynamic, schizophrenic affair, with a downbeat, skeletal intro and a mid-song eruption into MELVINS-like, slug-slither riffing. “Selimesh” is the sound of doom squeezed through the eye of a needle; viscous, angular and oppressive, it revels in wrongness and bad juju. In contrast, “Canticle” and “Abbess” are positively up-tempo and overburdened with wonky riffs, while “Nightmarchers” touches upon epic doom territory, like a throwback to CATHEDRAL‘s “Endtyme” epiphany of heaviness, but filtered through a post-metal prism.
After all that flagrant soul-evisceration, final tune “Do We Have Another Battle Left In Us” comes as a major surprise. Folky and forlorn, it begins with CARDINAL WYRM in elegiac, quasi-acoustic mode, before another avalanche of dense riff-syrup engulfs the calm and drags everything toward a smoking rubble climax.
When sanity fails, weird is the way forward. “Devotionals” ignores both left and right hand paths, taking an off-the-clock magic carpet through doom’s hallowed halls, out of their minds on moonshine and safe in the knowledge that no one else sounds quite like this right now.