Canada’s own Tomb Mold dropped one of the top 5 releases of 2018 earlier this past summer with their second full-length, Manor of Infinite Forms. Despite being undoubtedly satisfied, the band must’ve decided to feed their freaky following with one more piece of music prior to 2019’s turn. Let’s take a look at this new two-track EP.
Poutine, Niagara Falls, and Tomb Mold; three of my favourite Canadian things. A pleasure of the taste buds, a pleasure of the eyes, and a pleasure of the ears. What an afternoon.
I’ve been watching this band fester and multiply over the course of a year-and-a-half and its been a treat. I’ve seen Tomb Mold play in the backroom of a bar for no more than 150 people, and once again a few months later at Quebec Deathfest, for a good 400-or-so fans. They’re one of those bands that will inevitably be up there with the best of ‘em if they play their cards right, and so far, they’re the poker champions of the underground. While they’re style is a creative take on an already-established death metal niche, they do their thing super well and they’re currently reaping the rewards. It helps that they all seem like good guys, too.
The limited-to 300 copies cassette release of Cerulean Salvation sold out in hours, and the band had to issue a one-per-customer rule for the sake of fairness. This should offer enough insight on where the band stands as of now.
Cerulean Salvation is a two-track EP, consisting of “Planetary Clairvoyance (They Grow Inside II)” and “Cerulean Salvation”, two lengthy sub-six-minute numbers. The first track is a sequel to a song on their debut album, “They Grow Inside”, which is a neat idea. I went back and listened to the first rendition a few times, and there are definitely some similarities between the two. There is a distinguished lead guitar doodling going on in the background of both tracks, but to be quite frank, that factor is what makes Tomb Mold well, Tomb Mold.
Now that I come to think of it, the band’s style is fairly difficult to put into words. I’d describe their sound as a unified chaos, if that makes any sense. You can pick out a riff here and there, and spot a breakdown when it hits you, but for the most part the band is all over the place. This chaos does seem to originate from handpicked patterns that repeat themselves, resulting in this complicated dichotomy that I’m trying to desperately describe to all of you.
The band’s second full-length seemed to be more distinguishable in parts in comparison to their early demos and debut, which is why I had an easier time reviewing that one this summer. The two tracks on Cerulean Salvation do harken back to Tomb Mold’s earlier, more chaotic sound, which works well for the release format. While the conceptualization of Manor of Infinite Forms was well-received, I believe that the album’s longer runtime allowed for such ideas to come through, while the EP in question is better off consisting of a set of bangers.
My favourite part of the EP is during the final portion of “Planetary Clairvoyance (They Grow Inside II)”, when our beloved quartet hits the listener with a brutal time signature change. All instruments stop playing, barring one of the guitars playing a tasty riff, and the track just explodes with might with everyone else coming in at once. Its groovy, its heavy, I still can’t get over it. Tomb Mold really know how to set up a gritty breakdown.
With my admitted inability to describe what the heck is going on here, I’ll leave you with purely emotional sentiments from a music fan. Cerulean Salvation is another top-notch release from our good boys in the North, even their non-album output can compete with their full-length material! Keep it up, guys.