Release Date: Apr 1, 2014
Record label: Metal Blade
Genre(s): Pop/Rock, Heavy Metal, Doom Metal
Though their name is typically used to describe a traveler from a far-off land, Pilgrim feel more like a band from another time. Revisiting the bleak and dramatic sounds of early doom icons like Candlemass, the band offer up their second soul-crushing love letter to metal's most ominous genre with II: Void Worship. With a sound that harkens back to an era when doom meant more than having too many amps on-stage, Pilgrim perfectly capture the style's stark simplicity.
The young Rhode Island doom revivalists Pilgrim spent the first four minutes of their 2012 debut building a sort of altar for the voice of the Wizard, their vibrato-emboldened frontman. With clattering drums and crackling amplifiers, the trio wound again and again through one sticky riff, alternately stretching and strengthening it; at one point, a ghoulish choir even harmonized with it. When the band paused briefly, their dramatic stop marked their lord’s grand entrance.
Providence, RI’s Pilgrim offer everything a doom-metal aficionado could wish for: plodding rhythms, hyper-distorted swaths of guitar riffage, gloomy vocals, thrumming basslines and pounding percussion. There’s not a great deal that’s groundbreaking here, and the bass is rather underutilized, but the pieces all fit together snugly, and with tunes ranging in length from the brief instrumental “Intro” to the 10:35 “Master’s Chamber”, there are plenty of opportunities to become engulfed by oceans of pulsating noise. Title track “Void Worship” might be the album’s strongest tune, but both “Master’s Chamber” and the equally epic album closer “Away From Here” are very nearly as overwhelming (in a good way).
Pilgrim II: Void Worship (Metal Blade) Rhode Island duo Pilgrim likes its meat and potatoes untainted by progressive condiments. II: Void Worship doesn't pick up where debut Misery Wizard left off; it's simply chapter two in the same cringe book. Stunted growth presents no problem. Dirges "Void Worship," "In the Presence of Evil," and 10-minute monster "Master's Chamber" kneel in amplifier worship, while "The Paladin" chugs along like Godzilla after two cups of coffee.