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Review: Black Royal - Earthbound
Black Royal

Label: M-Theory Audio
Year released: 2022
Duration: 45:56
Tracks: 11
Genre: Doom Metal

Rating: 4.25/5

Review online: January 16, 2023
Reviewed by: Luxi Lahtinen
Readers Rating

Rated 4.25/5 (85%) (4 Votes)

Black Royal really caught my attention with their debut album, Lightbringer, and I've been following them ever since. I thought their previous album, Firebride, was a serious refinement of their sound into something more individual, and I'm happy to say that their latest, Earthbound, continues that trend with style.

There's no stylistic change to speak of, for this band has always been about making sludgy doom with a heavy death 'n' roll influence to make it loose and rocking without losing any heaviness, something akin to Black Sabbath crossed with Motörhead and Wolverine Blues-era Entombed. The only difference is that they have simply taken another leap in quality to make a more individual and coherent sound rather than a loose collection of influences cobbled together like other bands might have done. Every track is filled with grooving riffs and snarling aggression, whether it be more direct songs like the Kyuss-esque "Phoenix Ascending" and the Entombed worthy "Queen of the Underworld" or stranger numbers like "Law of Nature" with its piano intro and the doomy, creepy "Bear Cult."

It's always great to find a band that refine their sound over time without losing what made them stand out in the first place, and with Earthbound, Black Royal continue to do that while making some of their best material to date. Fans of the band can get this sight unseen, and newcomers will find a lot to love with this band, especially on this album.

Other related information on the site
Review: Firebride (reviewed by Luxi Lahtinen)
Review: Lightbringer (reviewed by Luxi Lahtinen)
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