Sunday, April 7, 2024

Album of the Month - March 2024: Uncle Woe - 'Oblivion and Further Disaster'

Ya know, I can't even remember how I came across Uncle Woe exactly but since hearing 'Pennyfold Haberdashery and Abbatoir Deluxe' a couple years ago I have made Uncle Woe music a part of my life. A place to go for refuge. A sound I can wrap around myself and become seaparte from the outside world. This month's outstanding release, 'Oblivion and Further Disaster' adds another layer of protection. A thick, insulating layer. Thick in tone, thick in emotional heft, thick in vocal expression.

I suppose those are the attributes one looks for when searching the doom forests for a balm for your soul but finding the unique combination that just clicks is becoming increasingly rare. Uncle Woe, and 'Oblivion' in particular doesn't so much click as slide gently into place. As loud as the tube amps get, and they get loud, as heartwrenching as the wails become, as forcefully as the drums impact, there's a soft quality that's hard to define but it definitely isn't as harsh and potentially brittle as a click would suggest. The connection is intuitive, sub-atomic, and seemless.

Throughout 'Oblivion' I often find myself almost frozen. The massive doom riffs, slow and patient, hold me in place. Not through oppression so much as thickening the space around me. The vocals, disorienting, calling from the mists beyond the pines, make my bones vibrate. It's about the frequency. The frequency of life. Uncle Woe is tuned into my frequency, or the other way around. I mean, it's miserable music much of the time. It's not happy. I'm generally a happy person. I practice being happy. But I've yet to acheive spontaneous and everlasting happiness. Suffering and delusion still hold sway over parts of my mind. That's where Uncle Woe comes in. Matching frequency, acting as a channel for expression even if it's just between my ears.

I've matured to a point where the music I really connect with largely depends on how it makes me feel. Sometimes that involves shaking my hips like I'm looking for tips, head-and-shoulder groovin', or in the case of doom, the feeling moves inward. Mind and soul. Uncle Woe is good for my heart and soul. Perhaps 'Oblivion and Further Disaster' will be there for you too through your own oblivions and further disasters. Only one way to find out.

Full March 2024 Spotify Playlist (this Unlce Woe release is not on Spotify)