Hailing from Belgium, The one man titan Gateway is releasing his second album “Galgendood”. An epic journey into the depth of the unknown bowels of hell. Six tracks of punishing & bone-breaking death doom with a nice lean thirty minutes run time.
Originally formed in 2014 & releasing their first self-titled album in 2015, Gateway have released some top-notch EPs. Crafting over time their sound & invoking even more dirge to their sound.
Now sees the release of their second album, “Galgendood”.
“The Coexistence Of Dismal Entities” the opening track is the perfect way to start the album off. Sounding like a huge step up in production & overall sonic tone this track is monstrous. Robin van Oyen’s vocals sound even more cavernous & raw than before.
And the overall swampy, doomy & brutal tone he has been able to craft on this album is one of the best I’ve heard of the year. When seeking out heavy doom soaked death metal this is what I’m searching for. Similar to how Worms “Evergloom” struck me this has that refreshing, new take on the genre. Gateway might now be breaking new ground but this album feels right at home with the death doom tag.
A track like “Nachtritueel (Evocation)” at the halfway mark is just a breath of beautiful but still musty air. A tribal percussion like interlude that stands well even as its own track. This rhythmic, spellbound track feels hypnotic & primordial.
“Scourged At Dawn” picks up the pace, A glimpse of what would happen if you soaked Bolt Thrower in reverb & used Incantations amp heads to create an ungodly track. Robin’s vocal performance on this track at its peak & is truly one of the most gut wrenching.
Closer “Galgendood – Dagritueel – Duvelsput” is a true journey. A three parter that starts hugely, making you succumb to its stompy & aggressive strength. Before bringing back that chanting tone like earlier track “Nachtritueel (Evocation)”. A nice breather but still unsettling before closing out with the final part of the track. A true “caveman death metal” section. Knuckle dragging & at its most primitive this closing track really has it all.
“Galgendood” is a highly welcomed surprise. It has everything you could possibly want from a death doom album, but gives shades of tribal, experimental & unearthly sounds. This is truly one of the most punishing, thought provoking & satisfying albums of 2023. A huge step up for Gateway, and this album will put them on many list’s for one of the best albums of the year.
Galgendood is out via Transcending Obscurity Records on 21st July 2023
Line up – R – Everything
MH – Additional leads
Painting by Pieter Bruegel the Elder
Additional illustrations Martin Schongauer
Track listing –
1. The Coexistence Of Dismal Entities 2. Sacrificial Blood Oath In The Temple Of K’zadu
3. Nachtritueel (Evocation)
4. Scourged At Dawn
5. Bog Bodies Near The Humid Crypt
6. Galgendood – Dagritueel – Duvelsput