You know what they say about sequels, how the longer they go on for the crappier and more insignificant they become? Well that may be the case with these preview intros! Day Two of Doom Fest on the other hand will be just as much of a monumental success as the day preceeding it, chock full of bands who are gonna keep the festivities rolling long into the night, bringing those feelgood vibes we’ve been longing for. It’s gonna be a heavy one and, from what the internet tells me, dryer than the Thursday – perfect for the movin’ and the groovin’ we shall all be partaking in!
I don’t know about you but Friday presents a day of some brutal clashes and, though both venues are moments apart and I’ll no doubt be dashing back and forth between venues, finding the right balance brings about its own share of challenges. If the same challenges bare true to y’all, hopefully the following will help guide you to where you’ll wantto be…
They say mother knows best, right? Then by such profundity Mother’s Green has to be the sweetest leaf of all. Sure enough, the March Fourth led project has spent the last decade rolling some of the classiest vessels of dense, rollicking heaviness we’ve never heard. These righteous grooves march out with a nonchalant regard for the utter destruction of the world around us, and the collapse of whatever we dub civilisation, making the likes of Fate’s Dreams, Swimming in the Sun, and A Close Encounter perfect for dropping out of this wretched rat race. Should you still be hungover and aprtied out from the night before, I cannot think of a better way to ease into the evening than chillin’ with Mother’s Green!
Be sure to catch Mother’s Green open Olde Mother Brewing @ 17:15 – 17:55
Latest Release: Acoustic Scenes (Self-Released, 2016)
It’s kill or be killed, that’s the way / It won’t stop now, no not today cries out RC Walker of Baltimore’s Atomic Motel in a song about war and a soldier’s choices to sign up to the bloodbath and yet feels incredibly closer to the American shores than distant lands. Vintage 47 is just the tip of an ass-kicking catalogue of riffcentric numbers these dudes have become known for; laying siege to the concrete wastelands of the modern life architecture and having a blast in the process, theirs is a sound with the bite, the grip, and the force of an adamatium dog which, as I type this, sounds far too awesome than it has any right to be! Opening Cafe 611 with an almighty bang and letting loose the dogs of war, Atomic Motel means business … and our necks may not be ready for it!
Be sure to catch Atomic Motel opening Cafe 611 @ 17:25 – 18:00
Latest Release: Surfaces (Self-Released, 2020)
What do you get when you mix funky, soulful prog with psych rock? Two answers: a really clunky genre-descriptive sentence, and perhaps the finest music to emerge from Boonsboro, just a half-hour drive from Frederick. Bailjack, who formed out of the ashes of Trilogy, are the personification of cool; conjuring up oft-dark freakedelic worlds with their freespirited, lysergic jams, the quartet harness the power of the great ball of fire in the sky with such discerning prowess; bending the laws of physics like mages of old and stopping us dead in our tricks with every twisting groove they venture down, we cannot help but be both electrified and energised in the same breath. This is sure to be a heart-stopping performance!
Be sure to catch Bailjack @ Olde Mother Brewing 18:15 – 18:55
Latest Release: Spring (Self-Released, 2020)
Chill has, for the most part, been the word of the evening thus far, but come a little over an hour into the festivities Rhode Island’s Coma Hole will be taking us down the darkened path less travelled. You know the one, the mysterious overgrown passage shrouded by dark foliage that’ll lead you down towards some unforgiving yet no less epic sidequest which will yield bountiful rewards. With their psychedelic groove blowing the darkness into other dimensions, the duo of Eryka Fir and Steve Anderson are heroes in their own right: their sheer bass-heavy might is formidable enough to take down giants and, should they choose to, level whole forests and even mountains. Do you feel brave enough to withstand their awesome feats of strength?
Be sure to catch Coma Hole @ Cafe 611 18:20 – 18:55
Latest Release: Coma Hole EP (Self-Released, 2022)
Boasting one of the earliest contenders for Album of the Year so early in 2022 is a staggering feat for a debut record, but Philly’s Strange Highways come armed with a galaxy of catchy riffs and choruses that bring you to the edge of your seat – almost daring you not to sing along with the during the likes of Today! and End of the Road – and will you to lose yourself in their boundless energy. Inviting you to open up your eyes and close away your fears with their furiously organic ’70s sound so rich in vivid hues, the trio are gonna sound the rallying cry for the party to end all parties and blasting all our worries into oblivion. Let the booze flow, the air be dense, and let their be extended drum solos to groove out to!
Be sure to catch Strange Highways @ Cafe 611 19:15 – 19:50
Latest Release: Strange Highways (Self-Released, 2022)
Doom. It’s why we’re all here this weekend. And if you can think of a more doomy opening to a song than found on Witch Tits then I’d like to hear it: that spoken word intro followed by the crushing bass…it’s enough to raze even the heftiest of buildings to its foundations! Penn State’s Morganthus may owe a whole bunch to the drug-induced perversions of Leccy Wizard but their brand of fuzzilicious amp worship is fundamentally welcome; setting fire to decibels and absolutely crushing our eardrums is the perfect sonic crime and when your back catalogue includes the likes of Supercult, Plague Bell, and Injecticide you know full well the coming punishment is going to land firmly on pleasurable!
Be sure to catch Morganthus @ Olde Mother Brewery 19:15 – 19:55
Latest Release: Cells (Darknaut Records, 2021)
Ol’ Time Moonshine
In space, no one can hear you scream. Bollocks. Ontario’s baddest motherfuckers Ol’ Time Moonshine could blow the space-time continuum should their rocketfuel-guzzlin’ motorfuzzin’ ways ever get let loose on the Nostrodamus or the ISS or, well, name a space vessel! With a penchant for the horrifying, these storytellers are gearing up for the ride of a lifetime with a sound as potent and as intoxicating as their name would suggest; traversing the continent and blasting every pitstop and venue they play at to kingdom come, there is no stopping their relentless onslaught, no resisting their libacious vibes, so your best bet is to just get on board and party like the world’s gonna end tonight.
Be sure to catch Ol’ Time Moonshine @ Cafe 611 20:10 – 20:50
Latest Release: The Apocalypse Trilogies: Spacewolf and Other Dark Tales (Salt of the Earth Records, 2016)
Faith in Jane
No stranger to The Maryland Doom Fest, Thurmont’s Faith in Jane are back on their mission to sweep us off our feet with their inimitable psychedelic improv blues. To witness these performances ought to be a rite of passage for any self-respecting traveller of the Sabbathian Highways worth the pilgrimage no matter where on this planet you are from; theirs is a hypnotic display of mind-melting instrumentals infused with vocals you could forgive for being from a Seattle record circa ’92, where each of their many jams and records propel you down hazy, expansive roads through the cosmos. I can see your eyes rollin’ at such a statement but believe me when I say these guys are the real fuckin’ deal!
Be sure to catch Faith in Jane @ Olde Mother Brewing 20:15 – 20:55
Latest Release: Trippin’ After Supper Vol. 4 (Self-Released, 2020)
Perhaps the youngest band on this years billing, Mythosphere is anything but inexperienced: a veritable who’s-who of the scene, with members and ex-members of Pale Divine, Beelzefuzz, and Fates Warning, there’s no denying the excitement buzzing around this supergroup (should the term be used here). With but only one song released from their upcoming record – and oh boy what a slamdunk it is – only heightening the tension and anticipation, we can rest assured our minds are gonna explode when the time comes for them to take the stage.
Be sure to catch Mythosphere @ Cafe 611 21:10 – 21:50
Latest Release: Mythosphere (Cruz del Sur Music, 2023)
The second that organ hits the sweet spot in the earliest moments of Dead Water, the opener for Act One, is the second my mind, body, and soul are sold, locked in an unbreakable contract with Alms‘ debut offering until the end of time! Though more bands ought to utilise this crucial instrument more not only do these Baltimore natives have a firm firm mastering of its unforgettable sound but are about so much more, for their vintage psychedelia sets our souls ablaze in dazzling fiery spectacle that isn’t afraid to roar out when it needs to. Set for a truly captivating and utterly befitting close at Olde Mother Brewing, are you ready to give in to the flickering?
Be sure to catch Alms headline Olde Mother Brewing @ 21:15 – 22:00
Latest Release: Act One (Shadow Kingdom Records, 2018)
If the booze isn’t flowing by the time Kingston, New York’s Shadow Witch take to stage then it sure as all hell will when those monstrously heavy neck-breaking riffs are let loose at Cafe 611. The floor will shake with the stomping of boots, the hair will fly, and a few bodies may get bruised as the likes of Demon’s Hook, Sun Killer, and Strange Skies flick some kind of primal switch in our brains; for a full forty minutes we will be at the mercy of a band whose infamy is only poised to project beyond the horizon thanks to their latest slab of heaviness – at least it bloody ought to anyway! There’s gonna be no telling who’ll make it to the next act unscathed but in these uproarious songs can come only certain victory for all those there!
Be sure to catch Shadow Witch @ Cafe 611 22:10 – 22:50
Latest Release: Under the Shadow of a Witch (Argonauta Records, 2020)
So much has happened in the world since Rochester’s Orodruin released their triumphant sophomore longplayer, their first since 2003’s Epicurean Mass but few pre-pandemic records feel as apt and as brooding as Ruins of Eternity; offering doom metal at the highest calibre as haunting as it is melancholic, it is a record defined by sombre greatness and destined for the history books. With a wealth of music at their fingertips in which to bless our spiritual communion together, Orodruin will light dimly cit candles in our hearts and no doubt trigger a set of much needed communal catharsis. Get set for heaviness that will reach deep within and yank your heart straight from your chests.
Be sure to catch Orodruin @ Cafe 611 23:10 – 23:55
Latest Release: Ruins of Eternity (Cruz del Sur Music, 2019)
Now that we have catharted as a collective it is time to come to the Sabbath! The witchcraft of Jinx Dawson and Coven needs little introduction some 50+ years since the release of that quintessential record Witchcraft Destroys Minds & Reaps Souls as the fire has been passed down through the generations of the music we live and breathe for. A legacy rich in carnal knowledge and wickedry, the spells they’ve been casting ever since that landmark release continue to bewitch those whose ears pick up the fatal words – and these aren’t spells easy to snap out from! As the night comes to a close, there won’t a single soul who’ll emerge from the mass as pure as the first snow of winter – as if any of us are to begin with!
Be sure to catch Coven headline Cafe 611 @ 00:15 – 01:20
Latest Release: Light the Fire (Self-Released, 2016)