Los Angeles (CA) – Decibel has premiered the self-titled debut album from L.A. Doom Crushers Stygian Crown in advance of tomorrow’s digital release. Stream it in its entirety below!
Stygian Crown – Stygian Crown (Exclusive Premiere)
Stygian Crown will be released June 19 on digital format via Cruz Del Sur Music. The CD and vinyl versions will be released on June 26.
“Stygian Crown are indeed devout students of the genre, and this album serves up such a tried-and-true sound with vitality and originality.”
“Stygian Crown conjure up long, heavy songs with crunching riffs and an atmosphere of dark myth. If you like Epic, Traditional Doom Metal, then this is the album to beat this year.” (4.5/5)
– The Metal Crypt
“Stygian Crown not only advances and honors the epic doom pioneers before them, but you can feel the worship and love for the genre pervading this material. Really good stuff here.” (89/100)
– Ride Into Glory
“Stygian Crown’ is a strong debut album, a longplayer that is a statement. Modern epic doom metal.” (9/10)
– Markus’ Heavy Music Blog
“Combining death metal style instrumentation with soaring clean vocals, Stygian Crown makes doom reminiscent of the legendary Solitude Aeternus and the like. This album is 51 minutes of unrelenting heaviness.”
– Noob Heavy
“If you dig slow, heavy doom with heart and soul check out Stygian Crown.”
– Redefining Darkness
“A great example of epic and traditional doom metal.”
“This is album is downright fire, which only spreads out of control as it starts anew, again and again.”
Sheer death metal heaviness and doom collide on this earth-moving debut!
On their self-titled debut album Stygian Crown introduces the sound of “Candlethrower” to the world: A devastating combination of doom and death metal, topped off by classically-trained vocals!
They call it “Candlethrower.” It conjures up images of doom-dancing and rolling tanks; doom-on-death; death-on-doom; Candlemass and Bolt Thrower melded together. Considering the background and sizeable résumés of its members, it wasn’t by accident Los Angeles’s Stygian Crown happened upon this sound. On their debut self-titled foray, Stygian Crown offers something few bands have in their arsenal: An album tuned to B, with a 26” bass drum and a singer who doesn’t need auto-tune.
Stygian Crown was formed in 2018 by former Morgion and current Gravehill drummer Rhett Davis, who tapped his Gravehill bandmates Nelson Miranda (guitar) and Jason Thomas (bass) to help launch the band. Morbid Eclipseguitarist Andy Hicks was the next to join, and with the help of longtime friend Bob Kassing, classically-trained vocalist Melissa Pinion was discovered after Kassing (who has since sadly passed away) introduced her to Davis. Shortly thereafter, Davis’s wife discovered a YouTube video of her singing a cover of Iron Maiden’s “Hallowed Be Thy Name,” making her the perfect fit for Stygian Crown.
The band released their first demo, Through Divine Rite
, in 2018, then started work on what would become their self-titled album. The album’s drums were tracked at Trench Studios (Exhumed, Hirax) with John Haddad. Guitars, bass and vocals were recorded at Miranda’s home studio, and mixing and mastering were handled by Mark Kelson of The Eternal’s Kelsonic Studios in Australia. The writing sessions for the self-titled were largely helmed by Miranda and Davis, with Miranda providing the riffs and Davis cementing the arrangements. While all three songs from Through Divine Rite
made the jump to the self-titled album (“Trampled into the Earth,” “Through Divine Rite” and “Flametongue”), the remainder of the songs were created through trial-and-error.
Davis, admittedly, is a stickler for arrangements and will often create multiple versions of the same song, while Pinion added her flavor by supplying song ideas and vocal lines written on the piano. This unorthodox way of writing paid off in the end: Stygian Crown emerged with a batch of songs that each bears their own identity but are unmistakably crushing and epic.
Pinion shouldered the lyric writing load, detailing myths from different cultures, namely “Devour the Dead,” which is about the Egyptian goddess Ammit, while “Two Coins for the Ferryman” recalls Charon, the boatman who took the dead across the river Styx. Her vocals — one of the defining traits of Stygian Crown — work majestically between the band’s boulder-sized riffs and powerful bottom-end, resonating on album opener “Up from the Depths” and “When Old Gods Die.”
A sterling, heaving album capable of moving heaven and earth, StygianCrown’s self-titled debut is a masterclass in songwriting and unbridled heaviness. Doomination awaits!
1 The Hall of Two Truths
2 Devour the Dead
4 Through Divine Rite
6 When Old Gods Die*
7 Trampled Into the Earth
* (CD/digital only)