I’ve heard Coliseum’s name around the traps for a while. They recently headlined a recent gig at Camden’s Underworld with Kvelertak, which I was gutted to miss due to boring grown-up responsibilities. Until today, I’d never got past the first track of their 2007 opus No Salvation, dismissing it as pedestrian and boringly growly.
I have a very odd approach to vocals. I grew up with the clean-ish vocals of vintage-period James Hetfield and Tom Araya and it can take me a while to gel with certain types of guttural vocals. Cookie-cutter cookie monster roars don’t do it for me, I need a certain tonal quality that makes the vocals stand out. Great examples of harsh but tonally intriguing vocals are are Pink Eyes of Fucked Up or John Baizley of Baroness. I hated the vocals of both bands to start with but are now two of my absolute favourites.
Anyway, Coliseum. It’s well worth persevering with. I need to give it a few more spins but a certain swing revealed itself that sets apart the best sludgy, crust-influenced bands. The vocals too have some depth of character that invites further listening. Oh and I almost forgot, this is another Kurt Ballou production. No wonder it’s growing on me, the man’s a god behind the boards. Expect a guitar tone to die for and enough heft to put you on your back.
Now I just need to get my ears around the new one: House With A Curse.