Album Review: Doctor Doom - A Shadow Called Danger
Reviewed by Paul Hutchings
A new one to me, French band Doctor Doom sit very much in the seventies era with a sound that belongs firmly with the likes of Graveyard, Kadavar, Witchcraft and the like. Formed in 2011 in Pamiers, they released a three track EP in 2012 before debut album ‘This Seed We Have Sown’ arrived in 2014. It’s been a long wait until the sophomore release, with the band undergoing the inevitable line-up changes. The current troops in Doctor Doom being Jean-Laurent Pasquet - Guitar, Vocals, Sébastien Boutin Blomfield – Bass, Michel Marcq – Drums and Bertrand Legrand – Guitar.
Whilst their sound is immersed in the doomier psychedelic style, they do have a unique element that is both enjoyable and pleasing throughout the 46-minute journey that unfolds.
They open with the ambitious’ Come Back to Yourself’, a seven-minute plus meander that provides the listener with opportunity to start the slow immersion into the trippy world that Doctor Doom inhabit. It’s followed by the expressive ‘What Are They Trying to Sell’, which seems to divert into an expansive workout of some note. It’s addictive, with a throbbing groove that pushes along nicely.
As the album progresses, there are plenty of opportunities to indulge in the extra dimensions that the band bring to the table. ‘Connected By the Worst’ sees them depart to another dimension, with thunderous drumming and some neat guitar work bringing the song to a dramatic close. I admit that at times my attention was wandering, but that’s often the way with this genre for me, but I was regularly snapped back to focus. The indie edge on ‘Hollow’ shifts into more groove and fuzzed up focus, with some excellent guitar work as the track progresses.
There’s plenty of extra psychedelic goodness as the band continue through the album. The penultimate track is In This Town, at 7:39 it’s the longest song on the record and it gallops by, as Doctor Doom once more delve deep, carving some mesmerising passages of play and then they throw in a curved ball finale with the short piece ‘Sarabande’ to bring a solid and enjoyable album to an end. If you like your stoner doom, then Doctor Doom have the prescription for your needs.