Sludge metal is something new to me. The slow, plodding, terrorizing music of Beldam’s Still the Wretched Linger feels like a bad acid trip to the wrong side of Wonderland. I mean that in the best way possible. I don’t have a lot of experience when it comes to sludge metal so I don’t know if this music is par for the course but my instincts tell me otherwise, that this music is something special.
The music is harsh and nasty, nastier than black metal or blackened thrash, it’s grimy not in a cold and icy way but a fetid swampy way. Still the Wretched Linger gives the listener the feeling of visiting a haunted asylum somewhere in the Deep South, were nasty spirits filled with madness and hate still linger in the hallways. If you listen closely, and it’s difficult to do that as you want to avert your eyes from the images invoked, you can hear some great southern rockabilly grooves
Insanity and the linger effects of madness are the themes of the album and you can hear the motifs play throughout the different songs. Each of the songs takes us deeper into a place that may be better left forgotten but we’re going there anyways. Why? Because it’s there, because it’s nasty, because it’s a story no one else wants to tell.
Still the Wretched Linger is a slow, drone-y, filthy ride over the edge of a cliff, it never lets go of you no matter how much you claw and fight. The themes play over and over until you can’t really tell what’s real and what’s not. A drug addled romp through layers of our own personal madness, definitely worth a listen, whether you like sludge metal or not.
Listen and support!