Getting floored by an emerging band is one of the best things about music writing. Mammoth Caravan‘s upcoming album Ice Cold Oblivion – due for self-release on February 25 – floored me. I was especially leveled by “Nomad,” the second track, which Decibel is premiering today.
Ice Cold Oblivion is burly riff-heavy goodness played by a trio of burly bearded dudes. Mammoth Caravan’s music walks a beautiful in-between spot: it reminds you of things you love (Eyehategod, Crowbar, Weedeater and Buzzoven) while sounding completely fresh and new. Mammoth Caravan’s music draws from the primordial well of southern sludge and doom metal but subtracts meandering and nonsense. The band relishes in the power of metal and their inertia is infectious. Mammoth Caravan injects energy and fun into downbeat music without losing power or ferocity.
Did we mention this is a concept album about a primitive nomad?
Stream “Nomad” below and learn more about the track from bassist/vocalist Brandon Ringo and drummer Robert Warner. Pre-orders are available via the Bandcamp link.
How did Mammoth Caravan get together?
Brandon Ringo: Robert and I talked at a house show in late June about a doom/sludge project and started a group chat with our guitarist Evan (Swift). Less than a week later, we started jamming and wrote and recorded two songs. We booked a show within a week of our first practice. Things took off from there.
Robert Warner: MC formed through a group chat on July 4th. All of us were in dark places and thankfully, doom metal brought us out of it.
Can you tell us more about the song we’re premiering today?
Ringo: “Nomad” is the second song we wrote and is one that I wrote lyrics for right before tracking vocals for our demo. My favorite part of the song is the breakdown at the end with terrifying guest vocals from Mat Johnson of the band Second Life.
Warner: “Nomad” is our hardest-hitting song on Ice Cold Oblivion – four minutes of kick-you-in-the-teeth riffage featuring the best vocalist in Arkansas (Mat Johnson).
Will you be putting out the album independently, or are you looking for a label?
Ringo: As of now, we are putting the album out independently. We hand-make all of our merch and handle our booking, promotion and distribution.
Warner: We are independent due to being unable to tour full-time due to jobs but we are always looking for a label to get to that next step as a band.
What is the metal scene like in Arkansas?
Ringo: Arkansas is a state that is extremely friendly to extreme metal. Though it’s the home of bands like Pallbearer, Rwake, Deadbird and Seahag, bands like Terminal Nation, Morbid Visionz and Severe Headwound have brought the scene back in a major way post-COVID and Little Rock has become a hotbed for death metal and hardcore.
How did you decide to write songs about the Ice Age?
Warner: You always have to have a starting point. This album is a concept record about a primitive nomad chasing a baby mammoth from the herd. We read an article about a frozen mammoth named Yuka and the lyrics started flowing.
Ringo: We want to play as many shows for as many people as possible. We are also working on our next release, which will take us out of our comfort zone.
Warner: We’ll do a few weekend warrior tours to help promote the album, then we are back in the studio in July to record our next monolith.