Slow and low, that is the tempo with this new track from Philly sludgelords Ritual Earth. “Free From My Vessel” is the pre-release launch from the quartet’s upcoming Iodine Recordings debut, MMXX, which is set for release March 18. Though the band’s sound is variously described as “doom gaze” and “psych metal,” this track leaves us with a definite early ’90s Seattle vibe, and the drop-tuned riffing offers nods to Kyuss, as well. It’s heavy and tuneful, with a hint of psychedelic guitar work.
The foursome—vocalist George Chamberlin, guitarist Steve Mensick, bassist Chris Scott and drummer Chris Turek—can trace its origins back to 2018 when the three musicians, members of Chimpgrinder at the time, decided to add a vocalist with more range to suit a change in direction. Chamberlin’s roots were in hardcore, but he had the vocal range that suited the doomy, spacey direction Ritual Earth was looking for. Fast forward to fall 2020, and the band recorded its seven-track album with David Downham at Gradwell House Recording and sought a label. They found a suitable partner in the recently relaunched Iodine Recordings, and finally secured a 2022 release for MMXX, which can be preordered here.
Here’s what the band had to say about the song and video:
“‘Free From My Vessel’ is a song we are extremely proud of. It has all of the elements that we enjoy most out of playing music together, from a slow, mantra-like groove, to thunderous bass, pounding guitars and a vocal hook that you wouldn’t mind singing along to. Musically it’s just us in our rawest form, doing what we do best and not holding back. We decided to keep the video simple, us playing live, as a way to introduce viewers to the band.”