Lair of the Minotaur Carnage

After the demise of 7000 Dying Rats, band-mates and Chicago natives Steven Rathbone and Donald James Barraca enlisted Pelican/Tusk drummer Larry Herweg for the ultra-heavy doom/thrash outfit Lair of the Minotaur. Tales spun from Greek mythology provide the lyrical license to kill, and Carnage splits skulls from top to bottom. "Carnage Fucking Carnage” starts off with Herweg’s blast-beats, after which comes High On Fire-styled pummelling chords; then the song changes tempos like Mastodon to go into a full-fledged doom epic with screamed vocals like Burning Witch; and finally, it reprises said HOF riffage for the big finish. "The Wolf” begins with telltale Celtic Frost references before blossoming into old-school thrash not unlike Demolition Hammer. The venerable Saint Vitus rises from the bare-boned guitar intro of "Lion Killer” and stays its course throughout, yet "Caravan of Blood Soaked Kentauroi” pulls out the more modernised doom grooves of Cathedral and a distant Corrosion of Conformity. The breakdowns of "Enemy of Gods” sound like old Obituary, rumbling along like old Asphyx. "Warlord” sees Rathbone aping Mike Patton in death-metal mode but with a hardcore influence, and "Burning Temple” creeps in like old Winter and right back out again. The demo-quality production detracts a bit from the finished product, but Carnage still comes off as a classy spin on classic doom. (Southern Lord)