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Cross Vault – ‘Miles to Take’ (EP Premiere)

cross vault - cover

I’ve always found it beneficial to lose myself in tragic music in trying times, and dark times are upon us. German doom metal unit Cross Vault, who recently expanded their lineup into a five-piece, has embodied the innate, dark sadness of tragedy. Their two preceding full-length albums came mired in desperate, melodic grief with the deliberation and pace of a funeral march. There are many words which can poetically encompass Cross Vault’s emotive nature, but the most powerful way I could think to describe them is succinct: Cross Vault is sad, and their sadness grows. Returning with a two song EP, Miles to Take is Cross Vault at their most tragic.

Following in the atypical, singer-songwriter approach of big, leafy, plodding music with long-form ideas and subtle melodies which made Warning a household name and dragged Bathory from the pit of his mid-era thrash flirtations, Miles to Take is a much more mature, contemplative Cross Vault. There were moments on Spectres of Revocable Loss and The All-Consuming which cemented Cross Vault somewhere closer to the “traditional” end of the doom metal spectrum – hints at some of Iommi’s great riffs, a heavier, more metallic rhythmic approach, and a more dynamic, heroic sound, so this newer, more downcast sound isn’t so much “grown up,” but concentrated. There was always a sense of misery in Cross Vault’s music, be it in the moments N.’s voice breaks under pressure, or the soaring leads elicit a significant shiver, and Miles to Take zeros in on that sense of raw, emotive power. This might only be two songs, but I take this as a promising sign of things to come.

Miles to Take will be released on LP and CD by Iron Bonehead Productions on Friday, November 18th. Listen to the full EP below.

Follow Cross Vault on Bandcamp and Facebook.

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