Bog Oak – A Treatise On Resurrection And The Afterlife

God damn take a breath before you finish trying to say the title of this one.  It's so blasted long there's probably a new law that will be on the books in about ten years after it passes through the House, provided the dichotomy of idiocy up in there gets with it.  It shall thus be worded: herewith no EP shall have a title longer in words than there are tracks.  Class A felony.  Minimum fine of $200,000 and an eon of jail time to be served.  Now that we've got that humorous intro out of the way, let's discuss the actual release.  Doom bands always seem to have the name thing down, other than a few slips we've encountered here and there.  Why is it so easy to do?  How is it they always seem to be spot on with the naming?  There tends to be a sense of massiveness and/or degradation, often with references to something in nature. So Bog Oak does just that and catapults your mind into visuals such as a decaying, musty treant in the middle of a mire so dense even Swamp Thing wouldn't bother to walk in it.  But there's also a sense of mysticism to it, without that tiresome druid thing.  You instead imagine a procession of Neolithic-era acolytes draped in bones wading through the bog, towards the oak they shall set ablaze.  So the title, even though we had to stop for air in the middle of it, actually furthers the imagery and if anything it couldn't have been more perfect for this tearing little EP.  Fine revoked, plea of not-guilty accepted for reason of necessity.

  

A Treatise On Resurrection And The Afterlife doesn't waste any time.  Intro?  Pfff, why even?  Let's just begin, Bog Oak says.  Already you can hear that pleasingly dirty sound the best of better doom bands utilizes to further the genre's formidable presence.  What's also interesting, along with the dirt you crave, is the psychedelic angle Bog Oak takes numerous times through this release.  Luckily, the integration of both the trudging and the psychotropic aspects is done without feeling like deviation.  More impressive is the vocalist, who is able to summon bile from the depths of her organs and then suddenly shifts into absolute beauty of tone with atmospheric, clean singing a number of other "vocalists" out there in the doom world could take a cue from.  Hint, dudes, sing like this once in awhile.  So what makes it so special, though?  You've probably heard that kind of thing before, in fact it's sounding pretty average so far.

 

But there's more to Bog Oak and A Treatise On Resurrection And The Afterlife than our simple explanation of the musical interplay we just provided.  We can do that all day.  But if we did that all day it would bore us to tears because there needs to be more to it.  The other aspect of this trio that needs to be discussed is their highly unique approach to the occult philosophy one often associates with doom.  But it's not superficial, it's not an image, they seem to have put quite a bit of effort into the depth behind their ideas, utilizing their musical approach to connect to perhaps something otherworldly, something beyond normal mind and reality.  Oak in a bog?  It is not simply such, its roots coils into some ancient sense of being, with references to Heinrich Agrippa, the Misanthropic Luciferian Order, and even Islamic mysticism.  It's like a rotting library of esoteric literature banned centuries ago.  The sheer amount of obscurity in their choices of thought is astounding, and yet another layer to what this band is about.  It's refreshing to see something that's not simply about the music for once, and considering this is their first real release, whatever comes next might open a void to forgotten Gods.  Excellent stuff, and we're glad we were able to pull out a Swamp Thing reference.

 

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Written by Stanley Stepanic

Bog Oak – A Treatise On Resurrection And The Afterlife
Svart Records
5 / 5