Peth is one of those bands that would have been known as "proto-doom metal," should they have come into existence about 45 years ago—and in the modern genre space, where they formed, the Texas band occupies a niche zone between heavy metal, doom metal, and rock. This isn't a new idea, of course, but although the Texas band heed the same inspirations as so many other retro doom-ish bands, they instill their crunchy Sabbathian riffs with a jubilant fervor and a sense of fun that most other disciples of the proto-doom sound have cast away in favor of occult gloom. They top that off with massive, sprawling harmonies, making their new album Merchant of Death a purveyor of a kaleidoscopic sort of lethality. Listen to the new single "Abolish the Overseer" here.

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There's no doubting the riff that starts this track off: a true harbinger of quality doom if there ever was one. Reverb-drenched vocals follow shortly after, piercing but somehow obscuring themselves in the mix to avoid easy parsing, and lead the song through twisted corridors and one hazy groove after another. Not content to stick to a verse-chorus pattern, the second half of the song ventures into rambunctious solos and driving harmonies that completely discards those earlier, proven riffs in favor of escalating madness. It's a classic switch-up that delivers a rousing conclusion, taking a risk to move on from what was clearly working to something new. That same formula applies to Merchant of Death overall, as the album continuously reinvents their well-done riff worship with one strange enjoyable turn after another.

The band notes:

"Abolish The Overseer" is a new age proto-metal song dedicated to the trashing of any form of oppression in modern society.

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Merchant of Death releases May 27th, 2022 via Electric Valley Records.

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