DRAWERS is a French Stoner / Doom Metal band, formed in 2006. It took them two years to put out a first release, the 5-track “This Is Oil” EP. Another three years led to the release of the debut full-length, “All Is One”. Several gigs later, and influenced by an unknown source, the band made a split CD with their colleagues from HANGMAN’S CHAIR in 2012. Not wanting to remake the same album over and over again, they apparently opted for a different musical course, compared to the debut album, and so “Drawers” was born. The release was set on the 11th of February 2014.
It begins with “Once And For All” offering groovy Doom Metal, in a tight form and yet with a catchy touch. The singing is hoarse with a greasy undertone. While the Doom feel prevails, there is room for the occasional blastbeat. This transcends into a Bluesy solo moment, after which all power settles down to allow the bass to step forward. In this calm moment you’ll hear clean singing, which is ok, but sounds (to me) like Nicolas was drunk. No offence. 😉 Blastbeats indicate it’s time to get back to business and so it happens. All in all, a very good start.
No time to waste, indeed, as “Mourning” kicks in instantly with blastbeats and into the chorus part. The music remains groovy in the verses, the vocals keep their greasy, screamy feel and sound. Melody is key in the chorus, making it stand out from the verses and blasted (short) bridge. A catchy guitar break offers a sort of resting point before the incoming attack. And the bass also gets its five minutes of fame again – albeit not for 5 minutes – in preparation of another round of blasts, this time, however, with a melodic/emotional injection in the music. And so it carries on.
“It’s All About Love” builds itself onwards, beginning with slow and groovy music, followed by Doomy, yet Poppy Groove Rock. The guitars are the dominating factor here, although the drums help to keep things interesting. “Bleak” is just a guitar and vocals at first, then full power is activated. It’s another accessible, midtempo song. Doom distortion can be found in the chorus. Vocally, things sound pretty forced, as was the case in the previous song. A Bluesy break presents itself as the calm before the storm. All in all, quite alright, yet not as interesting/attractive as the previous tracks.
The Blues influence is also chosen for the intro of “Take Stock”. After that it’s time to unleash the powers of Doom. The tempo is lower, the focus lies on the music, not so much on vocals (which are clean here). But especially the last pieces of the song are where the action is. Time to ROCK then with “Shadow Dancers”, a catchy song, it must be said. It grooves, it rocks, and it also has a bass moment. Full power and melody dance together in the accessible chorus. In short: another highlight on this album.
Shifting back to a lower gear, here’s “Words”. The Stoner touch is more prominent now and overall the song sounds pretty bombastic, crushing, … Can I say trippy? The vocals have more drive and melody and this goes well with the heavy guitars and bass. A resting point was also included, in preparation of the crushing Doom that afterwards takes over. And Doom is also the main ingredient in “Detour”, the last highlight on this new release. After the intro, things speed up, there’s more activity, more energy being released. Also worth noting: variety in tempo and drumming.
“Drawers” contains eight tracks, totalling a playtime of +/- 30 minutes, which means the songs aren’t that long. The production is very good, clear and powerful. The compositions: kudos to the lads for the hard work. My only or main point of critique would be the vocals, as it’s a bit too much of the same. Other than that, DRAWERS may be proud of themselves. And rest assured, at least based on the album, that the songs will come out great live.
- Once And For All
- It’s All About Love
- Take Stock
- Shadow Dancers
Nicolas Bastide – vocals
Alexandre Berenguer – guitar
Laurent Bringer – guitar
Jérémie Ruiz – bass
Olivier Lolmède – drums